Archive for May, 2021

AACTE Amplifies Your Voice in Policy Matters

Lynn M. Gangone
AACTE amplifies member voices in policy matters impacting education and educator preparation, and our collective voice is being heard. President Biden recently proposed the American Families Plan, which directly targets investments into educator preparation programs. AACTE supports the proposal and encourages Congress to act. Please take a few minutes to watch this video and learn more about how you can get involved.
Visit the AACTE Advocacy Center for the latest updates at Be sure to renew your AACTE membership by the extended May 31 deadline.

CSUSB to Join Prestigious Program to Increase Diversity in Ed.D. Program

An elementary teacher reads to students in a dual-language immersion class from a Spanish-language book about penguins.

Photo by Allison Shelley for EDUimages

The Doctor of Education degree (Ed.D.) in educational leadership program at California State University San Bernardino (CSUSB) has been accepted to participate in the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education Holmes Program, which supports racially and ethnically diverse students pursuing graduate degrees in education.

The AACTE Holmes Program was founded in 1991 for doctoral students, providing mentorship, peer support, and professional development opportunities. CSUSB becomes one of nearly 50 institutions in the program.

The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) represents more than 800 postsecondary institutions with educator preparation programs dedicated to high-quality, evidence-based preparation that assures educators are ready to teach all learners.

A Congressional Success for Rural STEM Education

STEM education. Science Technology Engineering Mathematics. STEM concept with drawing background. Magnifying glass over education background.

Recently, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation, endorsed by AACTE—the Rural STEM Education Research Act (HR 210.) The legislation supports research and development to increase access to STEM education opportunities in rural schools and to provide teachers with the resources they need to teach more effectively.

The bill also directs the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to develop a prize competition to advance research and development of creative technologies for expanded broadband access. This bill further provides for assessments of Federal investments in rural STEM education to be conducted by the National Academies and the Government Accountability Office. The bipartisan legislation was introduced by House Science Committee Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) and Ranking Member Frank Lucas (R-OK) and passed the House with bipartisan support.  It is unclear if the Senate will approve the bill.

Mixed Reality vs. Field Experience? Oakland University Reports Simulations are ‘Less Messy’

The Argument for Mixed Reality Simulations in Teacher PreparationHow can we train teachers to elicit student thinking in ways that position students as sense-makers without being able to place them directly in the field? 

The newest episode of Mursion’s Education Roundtable Series will dive into Oakland University’s account of how its math and social studies training program is implementing mixed reality simulations to replace and/or augment field experiences during the global coronavirus pandemic.

On June 8, Sue Wiley will be joined by Dawn Woods, Linda Doornbos, and Cynthia Carver from Oakland University in Rochester, MI. to present their findings. During the Roundtable, the team will discuss emerging themes from their research, such as how simulations supported the development of justice-oriented high-leverage practices within their teacher education program.

The Education Roundtable: The Argument for Mixed Reality Simulations in Teacher Preparation, will include a live simulation demo, as well as a Q&A session where attendees can ask questions about their findings as well as funding, vouchers, and more.

Register now for this free Roundtable.

Washington Week 2021: Save the September Dates

Get ready to join AACTE at Washington Week 2021, which will be virtual again this year and scheduled throughout the month of September.  This year’s schedule includes the following:

  • Holmes Policy Institute – September 8-9
    AACTE Holmes Scholars will learn how to advocate for their profession by participating in interactive policy discussions and briefings.
  • Holmes Program Advanced Policy Short Course – September 14-15
    This short course is intended as an introduction to begin equipping you with the knowledge, desire, and skills to be an effective advocate and resource in the policy making process.
  • Day on the Hill – September 21-23
    AACTE members, nonmembers, students, Holmes Scholars, and PK-12 partners will engage in advocacy training and visit congressional offices.
  • State Leaders Institute – September 30-October 1
    AACTE state leaders will focus on capacity building and augmenting their chapters’ impact through leadership development.

Reserve Your Seat at the AACTE Leadership Academy Introductory Course: Space is Limited

Seats are still availability for the AACTE Leadership Academy introductory course, “Personal Wellness: Managing Your Stress and Time,” which will take place on Wednesday, June 9 from 2:00 – 3:30 p.m. ET. This will be an interactive session discussing the impact of COVID-19 on your professional and personal lives, the additional stresses, time demands, and overall wellness during these past 15 months.

States Pass Laws Restricting How Teachers Can Discuss Racism

A seventh-grader walks by a Black History Month display at Sutton Middle School on her way to class.

This blog post is written by AACTE consultant Jane West and is intended to provide updated information. The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE. 

States Placing Legal Limits on How Educators Can Address Race

On the heels of Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), the top Republican on the House Education and Labor Committee, backing two bills aimed at blocking the teaching of critical race theory in K-12 schools—four states have now passed legislation that would limit how teachers can discuss racism and  sexism, among other topics. The legislation, passed so far in Idaho, Iowa, Oklahoma, and Tennessee, bans teachers from introducing certain concepts, including that any individual is consciously or unconsciously racist or sexist because of their race or sex, and that anyone should feel discomfort or guilt because of their race or sex. A similar law also passed in Arkansas. In total, lawmakers in at least 15 states have introduced bills that seek to restrict how teachers can discuss racism, sexism, and other social issues.

The Benefits of Presenting at the Annual Meeting

Microphone on the stage at a seminar.

The events of 2020 challenged the field of education in unprecedented ways. The pandemic forced educators to adapt to new ways of teaching that included virtual instruction and hybrid and in-person instruction constrained by masks, plexiglass, and social distancing.

You still have time to submit a proposal and share your story of lessons learned during these difficult times and contribute to the crucial conversations to rethink, reshape, and reimagine the profession at the AACTE 2022 Annual Meeting, March 4-6, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Did You Remember to Renew Your AACTE Membership? Deadline is May 31

John BlackwellAs a member of the AACTE Board of Directors, I recognize and understand the challenges facing our members, and join my colleagues in working on your behalf.  

From the debut of the new Connect360 online communities where you can collaborate with colleagues across the country to our updated advocacy center, AACTE is committed to helping navigate this shared journey. Throughout the pandemic, our number one priority remains serving as the voice of our members.  

As the May 31 renewal deadline approaches, we hope to receive your continued support by renewing your membership, if you have not already done so. AACTE will continue to provide unparalleled support for our members and to help strengthen educator preparation—now and in the future.

AACTE Releases Toolkit to Help the Nation’s Schools Reopen

Educating the Future TodayPresident Biden signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act (ARP) in March, which includes $122 billion for the ARP Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) Fund. The ARP ESSER funds are intended to help state educational agencies and school districts safely reopen and address the impact of COVID-19 on the nation’s students. AACTE has developed the Educating the Future, Today toolkit to help members navigate conversations with state or local education leaders, encouraging them to use ESSER funds to staff classrooms with teacher candidates. 

These funds provide a unique opportunity for school districts and educator preparation programs to address the teacher pipeline.  As the U.S. Department of Education’s noted in its COVID-19 Handbook, Volume 2: Roadmap to Reopening Safely and Meeting All Students’ Needs, ARP ESSER funds can be used to staff classrooms with teacher candidates, thereby providing them with practical experience while helping alleviate the challenges teachers are encountering with the transition back to in person teaching.

AACTE Membership Grants You Expanded Access to GoReact Video Assessment Tool

AACTE and GoReact recently announced a partnership that grants members additional access to video assessment tools.  GoReact provides colleges and universities with interactive tools to facilitate video observation, coaching, and assessment for teacher educators everywhere. The software provides live and remote observation and assessment via simple, interactive tools, where candidates receive individualized feedback.

Through the partnership, all AACTE members receive complimentary usage of GoReact’s video assessment platform.

  • If you are not yet a GoReact user, your AACTE membership grants you free access until July 31, 2021.
  • If you are an existing GoReact user, your AACTE membership grants you expanded access until July 31, 2021.

JTE Podcast Interview: Preparing Teachers for Relationships with Students

Middle school history class

Photo by Allison Shelley for EDUimages

Listen to the recent JTE Insider podcast by the Journal of Teacher Education (JTE) editorial team. This blog is available to the public, and AACTE members have free access to the articles in the JTE online archives—just log in with your AACTE profile.

This podcast interview features insights from the article Preparing Teachers for Relationships with Students: Two Visions, Two Approaches” by Victoria Theisen-Homer. The article was published in the May/June 2021 issue of the Journal of Teacher Education

Attend HRC’s Project THRIVE Webinar: LGBTQ Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Youth

Young Asian woman holding rainbow flag to support LGBTQ+ communityAACTE partners with organizations that share its view that an intersectional lens is critical when educators are examining structures and practices that increase student discrimination and disadvantages.  As Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month comes to an end and Pride Month begins, one of AACTE’s partners, Human Rights Campaign’s Project THRIVE, is hosting a webinar with panelists that represent the intersection of these communities on May 27, 2:00 p.m. ET.

Looking Forward to New Orleans

As the May 28 deadline for the Call for 2022 Annual Meeting Proposals nears, John Henning, AACTE Board liaison for the Committee on Meetings and Professional Development, reflects on the theme and developing proposals for the post-pandemic world of educator preparation.

The AACTE 74Th Annual Meeting in New Orleans, LA, March 4-6, 2022, promises to be a memorable one. AACTE members have just passed through one of the most intensive and challenging periods of growth in the organization’s long history. There will be much to share and much to reflect upon next spring. Even now, AACTE members are deeply engaged in reflection as they craft their conference proposals in anticipation of the May 28 deadline. What a great time to take a deep breath, gather your thoughts, and prepare to share insights with like-minded colleagues. This is noble work and critical for reimagining teacher preparation.