Archive for March, 2017

Preconference Workshop Hones Educators’ Skills, Understanding of Rubrics

On March 1, approximately 45 educators participated in an AACTE preconference workshop (in advance of the 69th Annual Meeting in Tampa) designed to help them gain knowledge and skills related to accountability, continuous improvement, and quality assurance in their educator programs. Back by popular demand from the 2016 Annual Meeting, the session, “Rubrics, and Validity, and Reliability: Oh My!” was organized and led by members of AACTE’s Committee on Professional Preparation and Accountability.

Over the course of 4 hours, participants reflected on how they are meeting expectations regarding the assessment of teacher candidate performance, compared and contrasted their assessment approaches with participants from other institutions, and considered the impact their candidates are having on PK-12 student learning. In small groups, attendees engaged in hands-on activities introducing them to the rationale for using rubrics, developing and implementing strong holistic and analytical rubrics, ensuring that rubrics provide for the collection of reliable and valid information related to targeted tasks, and increasing understanding about the importance of this work in the context of accountability.

Being Accountable for Program Effectiveness

The colleges and universities that prepare our nation’s educators are deeply committed to program quality, innovation, and accountability, and important progress is under way in each of these areas at the institutional, state, and national levels. While our priorities are unchanged by the presence or absence of federal regulations, the regulations that were voted down by Congress last week would have impeded this progress by redirecting already-tight resources to create an onerous new reporting and rating system for teacher preparation programs. Now, thanks to the robust advocacy efforts of the field, our professional commitments can proceed unhampered by burdensome mandates and prescriptive-yet-unproven methods.

Absent these regulations, educator preparation providers (EPPs) participate in numerous public reporting and quality assurance systems. Both EPPs and states are required by Title II of the Higher Education Act to submit annual reports to the U.S. Department of Education, and states must report at-risk and low-performing programs. Programs also must meet state review standards, and several states have developed data dashboards that display information for all providers to help the public compare program quality. A plurality of EPPs also undergo national examination through the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation – a professional peer-review process using standards that are developed by the field and based on research.

Resolution to Rescind the Teacher Prep Regs Awaits President’s Signature

Your advocacy and that of your colleagues, partners, and students has paid off: A joint resolution to rescind the U.S. Department of Education’s regulations for teacher preparation programs has passed both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate and now awaits the president’s signature.

Since the initiation of negotiated rule making in 2011, these regulations have been contentious – even negotiated rule making did not reach consensus. In October 2016 when the final rule was released, a coalition of 35 organizations, including AACTE, signed a statement highlighting concerns with the final product. (For highlights of what the regulations entailed, you can read AACTE’s overview of the final rule or watch our webinar overview.)

Free Webinars This Month on Incorporating CKT in Elementary Teacher Prep

This month, AACTE will host free webinars on incorporating content knowledge for teaching (CKT) into education course work, presented by experts from TeachingWorks (University of Michigan) and ETS® Educator Series (Educational Testing Service). Please join us March 29 for a focus on elementary English/language arts CKT and/or March 30 for elementary mathematics.

In each hourlong event, you’ll hear about and discuss approaches that can be used to engage preservice teachers with the kinds of content problems they are likely to encounter during their work as a teacher, such as in –

AACTE Welcomes Renée A. Middleton as New Board Chair

Last week, AACTE issued the following press release announcing the new Board of Directors chair:

(March 4, 2017, Washington, DC) – Renée A. Middleton, Ph.D., dean of the Gladys W. and David H. Patton College of Education at Ohio University, became chair of the Board of Directors of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) today. During her one-year term, Middleton will lead the Board in appointing a new president and chief executive officer and developing new strategies and programming for the Association.

Apply by April 24 for Federal Grant to Support Development of Teachers of ELL Students

The U.S. Department of Education is now accepting applications for a new grant competition to support the development of educators serving English language learners (ELLs). The deadline to apply is April 24 (note that the Department requests a notification of intent to apply by March 13, but this is not required).

Grant funds awarded under this competition will go to consortia of higher education and state or local agency partners for the following purposes:

Dive Into Assessment Data, Accreditation Standards, More at AACTE Workshop

Are you preparing for a CAEP accreditation visit? Wondering how to apply evidence from your candidates’ performance assessments to make sure your program prepares them for key practices? Or perhaps you’re looking for new ideas for recruiting and supporting a more diverse candidate pool? Find the guidance you need at an AACTE Quality Support Workshop!

In just over 6 weeks, AACTE will bring expert facilitators and a selection of workshop sessions to Fort Worth, Texas, April 24-26. We’ve just posted a detailed schedule with descriptions of session choices to help you plan your time effectively (download the PDF here).

Educator Quality Remains Top Focus of Governors

The 41 State of the State Addresses made so far in 2017 show a continued focus by governors on education issues. Education Commission of the States (ECS) has recently updated its searchable database of trends in these speeches and issued a report summarizing the top issues spotlighted in governors’ addresses this year.

According to the report, this year’s top education mentions have included the following:

AACTE Celebrates 69th Annual Meeting ‘Acting as One’ in Tampa

Last week, AACTE was honored to welcome nearly 2,000 members, partners, and friends to hot-and-sunny Tampa, Florida, for the 69th Annual Meeting. Together we shared research, innovative practices, questions, and answers in a robust program addressing the theme “Acting as One: The Power of the Professional Community.”

Over the coming weeks, Ed Prep Matters will bring you a variety of reports from the Annual Meeting, including videos and slides from the general sessions and major forums just as soon as they’re available. Meanwhile, you can view (and share!) our conference photos on Facebook, browse the Twitter feed, and enjoy the following recap videos from Association TV.

Elementary Students Enjoy Having Two Teachers in the Classroom Through Mason’s PDS Model

The final segments of AACTE’s Research-to-Practice Spotlight Series featuring the George Mason University (VA) clinical model are now available online. This week’s videos present the voices of first and fourth graders from Westlawn Elementary School and Daniels Run Elementary School discussing their experience learning from interns alongside their experienced teachers.

CRA Resolution on Teacher Prep Regs Introduced in Senate; Our Advocacy Continues

On March 2, U.S. Senator Benjamin Sasse (R-NE) introduced Senate Joint Resolution 26 to rescind the federal teacher preparation program regulations. The measure has eight cosponsors, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

This introduction is an important step in the process to have these regulations rescinded using the Congressional Review Act. Already, on February 7, the U.S House of Representatives passed House Joint Resolution 58 to rescind the regulations. Should the U.S. Senate pass the measure, it will go to the president for his signature.

Call for Proposals, Reviewers for 2018 AACTE Annual Meeting ‘Celebrating Our Professional Identity’

Now through May 30, AACTE is accepting session proposals for the 70th Annual Meeting, to be held in Baltimore, Maryland, March 1-3, 2018. We also invite applications by May 16 for AACTE member faculty to review proposals.

The conference theme is “Celebrating Our Professional Identity: Shared Knowledge and Advocacy,” conceptualized as follows in the call for proposals:


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