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Manhattanville College School of Education to Receive AACTE Award for Multicultural Program

Manhattanville College’s School of Education logoAACTE is delighted to announce Manhattanville College’s School of Education (SOE) in Purchase, N.Y. as the recipient of the 2020 AACTE Best Practice Award in Support of Multicultural Education and Diversity for its Changing Suburbs Institute® (CSI) program. Shelley Wepner, dean and professor, Manhattanville College of Education, will be recognized formally with the award at the AACTE 72nd Annual Meeting, February 28 – March 1, in Atlanta, GA.

CSI is a grassroots, school-university-community collaborative that was established in recognition of the increasing diversity in suburban school districts and to ensure that practicing and prospective teachers are prepared to teach an increasingly diverse student population. Now in its fourteenth year, CSI focuses on four major areas: teacher leadership/development, collaboration, dissemination of information, and parent education. To address teacher leadership/development, CSI has established Professional Development Schools (PDS) in 16 schools across eight districts in Westchester County. Each PDS has a Leadership Team comprised of a faculty liaison, teachers, and school administrators.

Manhattanville College’s CSI program is receiving the AACTE award for immersing teacher candidates in schools with diverse student populations in order to prepare them to work in these changing suburban schools. Additionally, the program provides in-service teachers’ opportunities to work with diverse PK-12 students and their families in order to experience increased learning and understanding.

Offered annually, the Best Practice Award in Support of Multicultural Education and Diversity recognizes a member institution for the infusion of multicultural education and diversity concepts throughout all components of educator preparation in a school, college, or department of education. This means the institution addresses issues related to culture, language, demographics, ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, socioeconomic status, exceptionalities, and other factors throughout their curriculum, personnel, policies, and programs.

Along with a description of their program’s framework, goals, and objectives, applicants must present evidence of its impact and influence beyond the institution and provide letters of support from relevant community members. The AACTE Committee on Global Diversity reviews the applications and selects the winning entry.

“As the leading voice in educator preparation, AACTE represents educators throughout the U.S. who advance our profession through innovation, high standards, and leadership. For 24 years, AACTE has honored its member institutions, leaders, and individuals who make bold, exceptional, and revolutionary contributions to our field,” said Lynn M. Gangone, AACTE president and CEO. “The Changing Suburbs Institute® (CSI) program at Manhattanville College’s School of Education addresses the demographic changes in our students, which is occurring beyond historic urban centers to our suburbs throughout the country. No preparation program is exempt from preparing teacher candidates for increasingly diverse student populations throughout the entire country, and Manhattanville’s program serves as a model for other programs to emulate. As the recipient of a 2020 AACTE Award, Manhattanvile College’s CSI program exemplifies best practice in our field.”

AACTE issued a press release today announcing all of its 2020 award winners. For more information on AACTE’s awards program, visit aacte.org. Nominations for the 2021 AACTE Best Practice Award in Support of Multicultural Education and Diversity will open in April.


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Katrina Norfleet

Editor, AACTE

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