The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.
At City University of New York’s Lehman College in the Bronx, our early childhood education students are known for their strong work ethic and resilience. Most are working parents, some with long commutes to class on public transit, and approximately 70% are bilingual, having learned English as a second language.
Early on in the edTPA process, we set out to disprove the contention that teachers of very young children – our teachers work with kids as young as 2 years old – would not score well on the assessment. It’s true that it can be challenging to reflect and write about giving feedback to such young students, especially when some of our teachers struggle with written English. But our students led the way in determining developmentally appropriate ways to provide feedback, and they documented their work during writing workshops on the weekends.
As participants in the William Paterson University (WP) Holmes Network–part of the AACTE Holmes Program–we have enjoyed many new and stimulating opportunities. Throughout the past year, we’ve received mentorship and other valuable support as Holmes Honors students (undergraduates in teacher preparation programs) and Holmes Master’s students (in-service teachers in graduate programs), and last month we capped it all off with an inspiring trip to AACTE’s Washington Week.
Join AACTE Director of Government Relations Deborah Koolbeck for a members-only webinar July 19 or 20 to explore the latest developments in federal policy and what to expect in the weeks and months ahead.
With the national party conventions just around the corner, Congress is scrambling to finish up necessary work before departing Washington until the fall. A critical focus for the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations is moving its 12 funding bills through the committee before recess—including the “Labor-H” bill, which funds many programs of interest to AACTE members. This month’s webinars will discuss the fate of these bills and other priorities that unfolded in the final days before the congressional recess.
Ed Prep Matters is featuring “Stories of Impact” to showcase AACTE member institutions with educator preparation programs that are making a positive impact in their communities and beyond through innovative practices. We are committed to sharing members’ success stories and encourage you to do the same.
The importance of clinical practice in teacher preparation is well known. Increasingly, preparation programs are getting teacher candidates into PK-12 settings earlier and more often to enhance their readiness to enter the field. At Minnesota’s Winona State University, that means building a clinical practice model supported by a state-of-the-art “Education Village” slated to open in spring 2018, pending final state funding.
Last month, the Supreme Court upheld the consideration of race in admissions in its Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin decision. In our contemporary policy context of expanded civil rights—and their accompanying backlash—this ruling prompts reflection on the fundamental value of cultivating a diverse community, especially in educational settings, that includes but also extends beyond race.
Why is it important to give college students the opportunity to learn with peers from both similar and different backgrounds? For all students, having at least a “critical mass” of peers with shared characteristics boosts self-efficacy and academic success. Meanwhile, being situated in a heterogeneous learning community, particularly one that supports interaction both within and across groups, builds students’ interdependence, empathy, and fluency with “otherness.”