Clinical Practice Commission Convenes, Refines Work

Last week, AACTE’s Clinical Practice Commission (CPC) met to continue its consensus work regarding clinical experiences in teacher preparation. Colorado State University was a gracious host, and the high altitude was matched perfectly by the commission’s high expectations.

After our last meeting in June, commission members had been hard at work reviewing literature, considering exemplars, and drafting pieces of a large research document. Early on at this meeting, we affirmed our belief in the centrality of clinical practice and clinical partnerships for high-quality teacher education programs and practices. In hopes of maximizing the usefulness and traction of our work in the field, we decided to adjust our focus to producing a shorter white paper outlining bold claims and key supporting tenets for successful clinical partnerships and practices. The white paper will be accompanied by several additional pieces of scholarship aimed at different audiences and providing more details.

Over the course of our two days at Colorado State University, members of the CPC cycled through small- and whole-group rotations with intentional focus on streamlining our body of work into a second draft of the white paper. A “gallery walk” of the broad claims and tenets developed to date helped to showcase the work in a collaborative way. Following this cooperative process, we were able to successfully synthesize a new draft.

The CPC spent an evening of informal discussion with our host university’s faculty and staff. This cozy mountain setting fostered inclusion of new voices in our ongoing dialogue and revealed reassuring congruence of views and values despite differences in college and university programs.

We ended our time in Colorado discussing our next steps toward completion of the white paper and the ongoing development of a matrix capturing the national clinical practice lexicon. Members also deliberated myriad ways in which this important work could and should be shared. Discussions included which audiences to include within states, across the nation, and even globally.

Over the course of the next month, CPC members will work on refining a third draft of the white paper and the lexicon, which then will be vetted by others. We look forward to a virtual meeting in early November where we will tackle the next stages of our work.

We are honored to be part of this exciting work by and for the profession!

Glazer and Fogarty are members of AACTE’s Clinical Practice Commission.

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Courtney Glazer

Cameron University

Diane M. Fogarty

Loyola Marymount University