In keeping with the 2021 Annual Meeting theme of Resisting Hate, Restoring Hope: Engaging in Courageous Action, this year’s ACSR Business meeting will focus on the subject of promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the teaching profession. The meeting will take place on March 19, 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. ET.
During last year’s State Leadership Institute (SLI), Michael Dantley, AACTE board member and former dean of the College of Education at Miami University, led a spirited discussion and workshop based on the anti-racism work of Robin DiAngelo, 2020 AACTE Conference keynote speaker. Her book, White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism has played a prominent role in the national conversation regarding the history and influence of race and racism in America since its publication in 2018. Dantley’s SLI session entitled, “White Fragility” Combating Racism Together,” was an energetic and engaging exploration of the concepts in the book, from the perspective of educators. The session was followed by a panel led by Penny McPherson-Myers of Rowan University, entitled “Structures and Strategies for Addressing Racial Matters on College Campuses.” This year’s ACSR Business Meeting will continue this important discussion with a focus on the DEI work of our members.
At Understood and the National Center for Learning Disabilities, we have been working to understand the challenges that distance learning has presented to students who learn differently.
In response, we have developed a practical resource to help educators more effectively support students with learning differences, and in turn all learners, during distance learning. Today, we are eager to share that resource with you and the world at large in our new “Distance learning toolkit: Key practices to support students who learn differently.”
AACTE congratulates Miguel Cardona as the new U.S. Secretary of Education, sworn in today by Vice President Kamala Harris. AACTE recognizes Secretary Cardona as a lifelong educator who understands the importance of professional, high-quality educator preparation programs. AACTE and its members stand ready to work with the head of the U.S. Department of Education for ensuring that our nation’s educators are profession-ready and have the necessary resources to help students effectively achieve academic success.
“Secretary Cardona has a strong record on education and has served our nation’s elementary and secondary students at nearly every level,” said Lynn M. Gangone, AACTE’s president and CEO. “We are deeply concerned about the shrinking pipeline of candidates in educator preparation programs as well as the learning loss and growing deficits of children’s socio-emotional needs exacerbated by the pandemic. We look forward to working with Secretary Cardona to address these challenges as well as diversifying the teaching field so that it better reflects the nation’s student population.”
There are several great reasons for starting an online community, like the continuous learning it offers participants and the sense of pride in being part of a group. For members of AACTE, the new online community it is about connecting members, building meaningful relationships, and engaging in critical conversations with each other, Board members and staff. That is why the virtual AACTE 2021 Annual Meeting was a perfect initial launching point for AACTE Connect360.
Through the online community, attendees responded to different threads in the “73rd Annual Meeting” community group. The “Introduce Yourself” thread was a popular choice for new users, allowing others on the platform to learn a little bit more about them and sharing the best piece of advice they received from a mentor or colleague.
Congress Moves on COVID Relief Bill
This week Congress moved closer to the enactment of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan— the COVID-relief reconciliation bill with hundreds of billions of dollars for education, child care, and other education-related needs. The bill is expected to pass in the House this evening. All Democrats are likely to vote for the bill, and possibly some Republicans.
The bill will move to the Senate next week for consideration where the goal is to finalize the bill by March 14, when the current expanded unemployment insurance expires. Several education groups have come forward in support of the bill. Republicans appear likely to oppose the bill holding that it is too much money and that the process has not been bipartisan. However, since the Senate requires only 51 votes to pass the bill, even with all Republicans opposing it, it will pass.
During AACTE’s 73rd Annual Meeting last week, Pricella Morris, Phllandra Smith, and Moe Green were announced as recipients of the 2021 Holmes Program Dissertation Funding Competition (DFC).
Over the last four years, AACTE has held an annual Holmes Program DFC to support Holmes scholars’ dissertation research related expenses. This annual event is sponsored by AACTE and its partners, including the Council of Academic Deans from Research Education Institutions (CADREI), Teacher Education Council of State Colleges and Universities (TECSCU), the Association of Independent Liberal Arts Colleges of Teacher Education (AILACTE), and the National the National Association of Holmes Scholars Association (NAHSA).