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Archive for September, 2017

Congressional Activity Heats Up – Engage With AACTE Action Alerts, Webinars

As Congress returned from August recess, its agenda included a laundry list of items, and it is shaping up to be a very busy fall on Capitol Hill. Budget and appropriations, hurricane relief, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, Higher Education Act reauthorization, and tax reform are just some of the issues that will fill the congressional calendar. For many of these topics, the voice of the education profession will be an important perspective for your members of Congress to hear.

Follow these three steps to ensure your constituent voice is heard:

Podcast Interview Explores Implications of New Science Standards for Preparing Teachers

What does strong preservice preparation look like for teaching the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)? This question is explored in an article published in the May/June 2017 issue of the Journal of Teacher Education, an issue that also includes several other articles on the topic of the implications for teacher preparation of the Common Core and other new PK-12 learning standards.

A recent podcast interview for the JTE Insider blog provides insights from Mark Windschitl of the University of Washington and David Stroupe of Michigan State University, authors of the article “The Three-Story Challenge: Implications of the Next Generation Science Standards for Teacher Preparation.” JTE Graduate Assistant Bernadette Castillo conducted the interview.

SREB Commission Issues Recommendations for Teacher Preparation Data Systems

A commission made up of college of education deans, state legislators, university presidents, heads of postsecondary systems, state and district superintendents, and leaders of nationwide organizations has released a report presenting recommendations for state policy related to teacher preparation data systems. This Teacher Preparation Commission of the Southern Regional Education Board, a nonprofit organization that works with states to improve public education and support state policy makers, is charged with developing and identifying state recommendations to improve teacher preparation programs.

More Than the Numbers – Teacher Preparation Data Systems: State Policy and Recommendations, the Commission’s first report, focuses on how to build strong statewide data systems for teacher preparation drawing on policy models in three states – Louisiana, North Carolina, and Tennessee. In Louisiana, the report acknowledges the work of the Board of Regents and the Louisiana Teacher Preparation Program Dashboard for promoting data in a more accessible and transparent way. In North Carolina, the report praises the University of North Carolina Educator Quality Dashboard. In Tennessee, the State Board of Education, Tennessee Department of Education, and Tennessee Higher Education Commission redesigned the state’s Teacher Preparation Report Card to provide an interactive tool for aspiring teachers. Other practices that the report praises are data systems’ ability to follow teachers through their careers, focus on outcome measures, break down data “silos,” and make data more accessible.

New Annual Meeting Session Formats to Elevate Engagement Opportunities

The AACTE 2018 Annual Meeting will feature new and improved sessions that will provide deeper levels of audience engagement. AACTE is committed to modeling best practices for effective learning and offering attendees contemporary approaches to pedagogy. Join AACTE in Baltimore, Maryland, for a collaborative and interactive educational experience designed to contextualize data and information, foster peer-to-peer interaction and dialogue, and apply sound principles of adult education.

All of the conference formats for Major Forums and concurrent sessions have been revamped. In fact, we will say “good-bye” to Major Forums and “hello” to Deeper Dives! In the enriched Deeper Dive sessions, still scheduled in pairs during dedicated time slots, you will get inspiring content to apply in your daily work by exploring the practices and dispositions crucial to educator preparation today. Topics at these sessions reflect work that is central to AACTE’s mission and its ongoing initiatives, including presentations from collaborating institutions, affiliate organizations, government agencies, think tanks, and thought leaders from the field.

Gangone on Higher Education Leadership: Podcast Interview

In a recent podcast with Enrollment Fuel, the organization’s president, Jacquelyn D. Elliott, interviewed AACTE President/CEO Lynn M. Gangone about what leadership means. The following summary highlights the conversation.

Opening the interview with a question about her definition of leadership, Gangone explained it as the process of orchestrating change “with people and for people” – that is, while the individual leader may have the power to implement change, the collective team is where change happens.

Shared Values Catalyze Collective Impact

The greatest benefit of an association is the collective effort of its members to identify and then advance shared values. In the 2016 Harvard Business Review article “The Ecosystem of Shared Value,” the authors describe collective impact as a movement that successfully brings together various actors in their ecosystems to catalyze change. In the ecosystem of educator preparation, every individual AACTE member plays a critical role in creating a collective voice that impacts American education today and beyond. Through members’ active engagement, AACTE is empowered to achieve successes beneficial to our entire professional community and the students we serve.

Leading into this academic year, I have been highlighting AACTE’s core principles as they reflect members’ shared values and the driving force of our work. This month, I celebrate AACTE’s core values around scholarship and knowledge production, which represent your commitment to high research standards and to producing scholarship that contributes to educational practice. AACTE, its members, and its collaborative partners stand ready as a collective voice to effect educational and social change.

Member Voices: Insights From AACTE Workshop Inform Use of edTPA for Developing Equitable Teaching Practice

The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.

At the College of Education at Minnesota State University, Mankato (MNSU), our strategic vision is to inspire lifelong learning and professional engagement through racial consciousness, social justice, and inclusion within a global context. Our collective energy as a faculty is spent engaging in conversations, professional development, and research to ensure that our instructional approaches foster cultural proficiency in our teacher candidates.

To enhance that collective learning, several MNSU faculty attended the “edTPA and Equity” strand during the August AACTE Quality Support Workshop held in Minneapolis. The sessions, facilitated by teams of local teacher educators and national experts, examined how edTPA constructs address equitable teaching and learning practices and considered how candidates can engage in the assessment as a reflective opportunity to learn about equitable teaching practices.

U.S. Dept. of Education Issues Hurricane Flexibility Guidance

As part of continued efforts to provide relief for hurricane-affected regions, the U.S. Department of Education this week issued guidance to outline flexibility in reporting deadlines, grant-funded activities, continuity planning for disrupted programs, and fiscal management efforts. This guidance applies to state and local education agencies, Bureau of Indian Education-funded schools, postsecondary institutions, and other Department grantees.

Institutions affected by the recent hurricanes are highly encouraged to review the guidance, particularly if your program receives funding from a federal grant, receives federal student financial aid, or if you have other general questions regarding postsecondary education relief.

Want School Choice? Public Education Has It, Says New Report

“Although the current dialogue about school choice is generally focused on charter schools, vouchers, and the overall diversion of taxpayer monies to private entities, it misses a fundamental reality: Most public school districts already offer a wide range of choices to their students.” This message is at the core of a new report from the National School Boards Association’s Center for Public Education titled Busting the Myth of “One Size Fits All” Public Education.

At an event unveiling the report earlier this month, panelists discussed the wide variety of alternative options offered in public education. Thomas Gentzel, executive director and CEO of the National School Boards Association, noted that the system has evolved over many years from one that offers limited options into one that molds to students’ diverse needs – providing a greater degree of choice, in fact, than many private schools.

New Webinar Series to Discuss Principals’ Transforming Roles, Preparation

This fall, AACTE will present a new webinar series called “Principals as Transformation Leaders,” supported by The Wallace Foundation as part of the Association’s ongoing partnership to disseminate the latest research and practice innovations in principal preparation. As faculty working with current and aspiring principals in Colorado, we are excited to serve as moderators for these webinars. If you are involved in school leadership, either as a practicing administrator or as a university faculty member, please join us!

The first webinar, titled Principals as Transformation Leaders: Changing Roles and Responsibilities, will be held October 12 at 3:00 p.m. EDT. Transformation leaders identify needs and empower stakeholders to implement positive change to maximize the desired results. They are visionary, resourceful, and adaptable – qualities that are especially valuable in today’s educational environment, where the roles and responsibilities of a principal are changing drastically in any typical day. This webinar will explore these changes and how they impact the day-to-day work of a principal. Learn about proactive ways to support new principals in their challenging role from our panelists:

Using AACTE Advocacy Resources in a Critical Policy Analysis Class

This month’s members-only Federal Update webinars are today and tomorrow, September 19 and 20 – or just view the recording in our archive if you miss them! The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.

Over the summer of 2017, I integrated a valuable new asset into my doctoral-level Critical Policy Analysis class: advocacy resources from AACTE. From the members-only webinars to downloadable advocacy guides, these materials informed my students’ discussion of policy items pertinent to not only Illinois but the nation at large. They also provided current, practical information and tools for students to become more engaged in advocacy outside of class.

Report Highlights Benefits, Challenges of State License Reciprocity

Today, the Education Commission of the States (ECS), a national organization of state education policy leaders, released a report that reviews state policies related to teacher license reciprocity. While states are facing educator pipeline challenges, the report finds that teacher licensure systems are intended to ensure educator quality, but have the potential of limiting cross-state mobility that could cause harm teacher attrition and retention.

The report explores teacher license reciprocity – in which a candidate who possesses an out-of-state license can earn a license in a new state based on state requirements. At the national level, the report references the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) Interstate Agreement, which collects agreements between NASDTEC member states to understand which licenses are transferable and what additional requirements might be needed. At the state level, the report finds that since last year, 11 states have enacted new laws or regulations that facilitate teacher license reciprocity. Two states – Arizona and Nevada – became full reciprocity states by enacting new laws that remove barriers for licensure. Two additional states – Oklahoma and Delaware – passed new laws that waive certain assessment requirements for out-of-state candidates.

Study: Secondary Math Teacher Candidates Need More Preparation in Statistics

Have you seen the JTE Insider blog managed by the Journal of Teacher Education (JTE) editorial team? Check out the following interview with the authors of a recent article. This blog is available to the public, and AACTE members have free access to the articles themselves in the full JTE archives online – just log in with your AACTE profile here.

This interview features insights from the article “New Standards Require Teaching More Statistics: Are Preservice Secondary Mathematics Teachers Ready?” written by Jennifer N. Lovett of Middle Tennessee State University and Hollylynne S. Lee of North Carolina State University. The article, which appears in the May/June issue of JTE, is summarized in the following abstract:

Comment by Oct. 2 on IES Requirements for Efficacy, Replication Studies

By October 2, the Institute for Education Sciences (IES) is seeking input from the field on its requirements related to efficacy, replication, and effectiveness studies.

The impetus of the feedback request follows recommendations provided from a technical working group that was assembled in October 2016. IES seeks to understand whether the current Goals 3 and 4 (out of its full list of five) are meeting the needs of the field or whether modifications would be beneficial to replication and effectiveness studies. Goal 3 addresses efficacy and replication studies, and Goal 4 supports independent evaluation of prior efficacy studies.

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