AACTE identified and documented two exemplary teacher preparation programs that ensure all of their candidates are ready to work with all students, including students with disabilities. We are pleased to feature a set of videos from each program documenting how they implement curriculum for dual certification (general education and special education) and feature extensive clinical preparation.
Bowling Green State University’s undergraduate Inclusive Early Childhood Program and Portland State University’s Secondary Dual Education Program support new and beginning teachers in teaching in inclusive classrooms. Both programs lead to certifications in general and special education. “These institutions ensure that all educators have the skills to work with students with disabilities in the 21st century,” said AACTE Consultant Jane West, “School districts scramble to hire these outstanding students, as they come with the mindset and the skillset to be effective with all students.”
AACTE joins its fellow members of the Learning First Alliance (LFA) in celebrating Public Schools Week, March 25-29. The initiative is supported by national education groups representing teachers, principals, superintendents, parents and school board members to honor the achievements our public schools are making and the significant contributions public school educators and education advocates bring every day to public schools and their communities.
LFA members are hosting the second annual Public Schools Week on Capitol Hill in Washington and in communities large and small across the U.S. During Public Schools Week, groups representing LFA are inviting community members, lawmakers, parents and others into schools to see firsthand the wide array of programs and policies available to students that will showcase excellence in teaching and learning.
Greetings! It has been several months since the last update on AACTE’s strategic planning process, and there is plenty to report. First, if you have been following these blogs you will note that I am not writing with my friend and colleague, Kim Metcalf. Kim is now the chair of the AACTE Board of Directors, and he has asked me to assume the solo chairmanship of the Strategic Planning Task Force since he will have a lot on his plate. I know he will stay close to the work and will be a huge help as we work to complete he plan.
Along with Kim’s departure from the Task Force, there have been additional changes. We have bid a fond farewell to Dean Alberto Ruiz of Texas A & M University Kingsville, who has rotated off the AACTE Board of Directors, and have welcomed Chair-elect of the Board Ann Larson, dean of the College of Education and Human Development at the University of Louisville and new board member Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson, who is president of Clarion University of Pennsylvania and a former college of education dean. These new Task Force members join Laurie Mullen, dean of the College of Education at Towson University, and members of the National Office staff (see the full Task Force roster).
AACTE is now accepting applications from member institutions to join a new networked improvement community (NIC) focused on special education teacher recruitment and retention.
The shortage of special education teachers and the lack of diversity among all teachers have been well documented. Half of all schools and 90% of high-poverty schools struggle to find qualified special education teachers.
The aim of this NIC is to positively impact the special education teacher shortage and the lack of diversity in the special education teacher workforce in public schools. Participating institutions will identify a range of best practices related to increasing enrollment, strengthening partnerships with P-12 schools, and retaining special education teachers.
Read more about this new initiative on our website and in the Reducing the Shortage of Special Education Teachers NIC Charter.
Applications are due on April 1, 2019. Member institutions will be selected through a structured review process and notified in late April of 2019. An introductory virtual meeting will be held in May of 2019, and the first in-person convening will be held in the fall of 2019.
AACTE will launch a Networked Improvement Community focused on Special Education Teacher Recruitment and Retention in May of 2019. The NIC will investigate strategies to address the persistent shortages in the field of special education.
The shortage of special education teachers and the lack of diversity among all teachers have been well documented. Half of all schools and 90% of high-poverty schools struggle to find qualified special education teachers. Forty-eight states and the District of Columbia report special education teacher shortages. However, special education teacher shortages are not evenly distributed across the country. Generally, high poverty areas—both urban and rural—are most likely to experience the most severe teacher shortages, including those in special education. States vary in the degree of shortage they experience.
AACTE announces the newest addition to its staff, K. Ward Cummings, director of government relations.
“We are delighted to have Ward join us at AACTE,” said President and CEO Lynn M. Gangone. “He brings a wealth of policymaking experience and legislative expertise that will help further advance our advocacy work on both the national and state levels.”
Before joining AACTE, Cummings was a policy adviser for the Committee on the Budget in the U.S. House of Representatives, a senior legislative adviser to U.S. Representative Chris Van Hollen of Maryland, and director of intergovernmental affairs in the Maryland State government. He is the co-creator of the Congressional Negotiation Program, a collaboration between Harvard Law School and the Partnership for a Secure America to teach negotiation, conflict resolution, and coalition building skills to senior Capitol Hill staffers. He is a board member of the Rosenthal Fellowship, a program designed to provide international affairs graduate students with Federal government occupational experience.
In our last blog, we invited you to contribute to the strategic planning process by reacting to a draft of the plan that outlined the vision, mission, strategic priorities and core values of our Association. Thanks to all of you who provided your insights. In today’s update, we’ll share some of what we heard and how we plan to incorporate your ideas going forward.
In addition to providing concrete feedback on the draft text, many of you also asked for a plan that is more forward-thinking and that outlines how AACTE can help shape the future as well as navigate the challenges and opportunities that it presents. For example, how will trends such as competency-based and technology-enabled instruction influence both the daily work of the educators we prepare and our own programs? How can we best confront the teacher shortage in partnership with PK-12 leaders and state policy makers, while also ensuring the quality of the education workforce? What more can we and the same partners do to ensure that the profession is diverse and that educators are prepared to effectively instruct all learners?
AACTE, the 2018 Holmes Council, and the National Association of Holmes Scholars Alumni (NAHSA) invite current doctoral-level Holmes Scholars to submit a proposal for the 2019 AACTE Holmes Scholars Dissertation Funding Competition (DFC). The competition will take place 10:00 a.m. on Friday, February 22, during the Holmes Preconference Meeting at the Louisville Marriott Downtown in Louisville, KY.
The purpose of the DFC is to defray expenses of a Holmes Scholar’s doctoral research project. This funding competition helps take Holmes Scholars to the next level and provides a collegial and competitive space. This experience is designed to enhance Scholars’ competitiveness as they prepare to enter the job market.
The draft of the AACTE 2019-2022 strategic plan is now available for members–only review. You can access the plan on the AACTE strategic planning web page.
The draft plan is a two-page document, which consists of the following sections:
AACTE is a national partner for the University of Florida’s Collaboration for Effective Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform (CEEDAR) Center, which helps states and institutions of higher education to develop the ability of every teacher to prepare students with disabilities for college and careers. As a federally funded multi-million dollar project, CEEDAR works with AACTE and others to promote the preparation of all educators to have the mindset and skillset for effectively instructing students with disabilities along with all other students in the mainstream classroom.
“This initiative is about ensuring that all educators have the skills to work effectively with students with disabilities,” said AACTE Consultant Jane West, who leads the Association’s work with CEEDAR. “Special education has too often been considered a place and not a service. We are highlighting and promoting preparation for both general and special educators so they can provide effective instruction to students with disabilities in inclusive ways with an eye toward raising expectations and undermining the stigmatizing of students with disabilities.”
AACTE members Ernest Black and John Kuykendal joined AACTE consultant Amanda Lester on a recent episode of Education Talk Radio to discuss the networked improvement community’s (NIC’s) study on the challenges and opportunities to increase Black, Hispanic, and Latino male teachers nationwide.
“Using a NIC is part of an ‘improvement science’ approach to looking at a problem of practice that persists in education,” explained Lester. The NIC involved a study of 10 institutions that shared their own experiences in recruiting and retaining teacher candidates in this population. Black and Kuykendal represent two of the college preparation programs that participated in the study, which began in 2014.
The premise of the research is that Black and Hispanic/Latino male students underperform in schools but when paired with Black and Hispanic/Latino male teachers for as little as one year, their success improves.
I am thrilled to announce a series of hires within the National Office. I invite you to join me in welcoming these new AACTE team members as they join us in our goal to exceed expectations for distinctive, member-centered work that continues to move our profession forward in a multitude of ways.
Jacqueline (Jackie) Rodriguez is the AACTE assistant vice president, programs and professional learning. She has a Ph.D. in education with a focus on exceptional education from the University of Central Florida and an M.A. in special education with a learning disabilities specialization from American University. She earned her B.A. in international affairs from The George Washington University. Prior to joining AACTE, Jackie served the College of William & Mary in many capacities, including as assistant professor in the School of Education (areas of teaching and research: inclusive education, culturally and linguistically diverse exceptional learners, teacher preparation, special education, education policy, and education policy to practice). A Holmes Scholars alumna, Jackie established the Holmes Scholars Program during her tenure at the college. Jackie began her career as a special education teacher. She is the secretary to the Higher Education Consortium for Special Education and active in the Teacher Education Division of the Council for Exceptional Children. She serves on several editorial boards and was a McKnight Doctoral Fellow.
Are you an AACTE member? If yes, then the Association needs to hear your voice! The Strategic Planning Task Force would like you to tell them about your professional needs and priorities by taking the Member Flash Poll (member login required) before October 19.
You might wonder, why is AACTE going through all of this work? The simple answer is because it leads to better decisions, better engagement, and better execution. Member engagement has become critical to associations’ success and the AACTE strategic planning process is designed to be interactive and iterative for all members. I encourage you to participate in the member flash poll, which is the first of several opportunities to weigh-in and share your insights. This is an important way to help ensure that AACTE remains relevant to you, your institution, and your students.
Nearly 40 members of the AACTE Clinical Practice Commission (CPC) and the Special Education Task Force met in Washington, DC on September 24-26 to discuss their separate and shared initiatives that serve as next steps for advancing the new CPC report. Released in January 2018, A Pivot Toward Clinical Practice, Its Lexicon, and the Renewal of Educator Preparation by the CPC offers a framework, guidance, and common lexicon to expand the operationalization of clinical educator preparation. Its 10 proclamations and tenets identify highly effective and evidence-based practices for embedding teacher preparation in the PK-12 environment.
During the planning session, the CPC developed a working plan to advance its emissary work and to create a site-based peer-coaching model. The Taskforce focused on finalizing a series of tenets that will be added to the existing CPC proclamations to provide more specific practice recommendations for special and inclusive educator preparation.
“The CPC met on the first day to discuss the next round of their work, which is to share findings of the report more broadly through focused emissary work and the development of peer coaching strategies,” said Amanda Lester, AACTE director of programs and professional learning. “This emissary work includes a defined plan that will help AACTE members learn more about how to implement the report’s research for developing or expanding their clinical practice model.”
Greetings, colleagues. In our first blog on the strategic planning process, we noted that a Task Force would be meeting to draft revisions to the organization’s vision and mission and to outline strategic priorities for 2019 to 2022. That meeting just concluded and we are pleased to report that the Task Force is on track to deliver a draft to the full membership for review next month.
Over two days, the Task Force, which is composed of terrific members of the AACTE Board of Directors and National Office staff, wrestled with the challenges and opportunities confronting AACTE and its members and reached consensus on a set of strategic priorities that can guide the association’s work during the next 3 years. These priorities, with their associated objectives and progress metrics, will guide the staff as they experiment with new member programs and services and will help the board to track the association’s progress.