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New AACTE Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Video Series Now Available

AACTE Diversity - Equity - Inclusion video Series

AACTE is excited to announce the release of its new video series on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in educator preparation. The videos address a wide variety of topics ranging from promising practices for recruiting and retaining teachers of color, to the importance of culturally relevant teaching for growing the special education teacher pipeline, and also promoting equal access to quality teachers, just to name a few.

The video series exemplifies the Association’s new strategic priority to promote diversity, equity and inclusion. AACTE and its members value the diversity of students, their families, and educators; equity in access to high quality instructional environments; and the inclusion of all students, defined as access and opportunity in PK-20 classrooms.

Why Trauma-Informed Instruction is Vital to Success in the 21st Century Classroom

Girl Stutent scribbling HELP and sad face into notebook.

Our nation and the entire world are changing rapidly. With the rise of threats to our children’s safety like depression, lack of mental health resources, familial disruptions, and school violence and shootings, it is imperative that we equip teachers and school personnel with the tools they need to recognize and respond to all students, in all classrooms.

In today’s schools, students are suffering from a variety of issues; one that arises too often is mental health. Unfortunately, it is not always apparent what these students are experiencing. Depression is rampant. Emotional stress stems from a variety of external factors including depression, divorce, social media anxiety, lost friendships, bullying or simply feeling out of touch with others. It is imperative, now more than ever, that our teachers are prepared to notice when students are experiencing these types of trauma. Trauma informed practices allow teachers to be trained well beyond the obvious clues and prepares them to be aware of early, less apparent warning signs, so they can successfully and swiftly intervene to help a student in need.

California Rural Schools Struggling To Hire Teachers Could Get Help from $9.4 Million In Grants

This article and photo originally appeared in EdSource and are reprinted with permission.

Jennifer Garza, a 7th grade English teacher at Green Acres Middle School in Visalia, was teaching on an intern credential in 2015.

Two federal grants totaling over $9.4 million will help California recruit teachers and mental health professionals to rural schools.

The U.S. Department of Education awarded the five-year grants to the California Center on Teaching Careers, an organization started in 2016 to help solve the persistent teacher shortage. The center is run by the Tulare County Office of Education, in partnership with California State University Bakersfield.

AACTE Board Election Underway Through Nov. 29

The 2019 election for the AACTE Board of Directors is now underway through November 29. Four seats will be decided via online voting:

  • Two at-large seats
  • One representing the Association of Independent Liberal Arts Colleges for Teacher Education (AILACTE)
  • One representing the Council of Academic Deans from Research Education Institutions (CADREI)

AACTE and University of Central Florida Illustrate Classroom Simulation to Education Grantmakers

Jacqueline Rodriguez demonstrating TeachLivEAACTE President and CEO Lynn Gangone and I had the privilege of demonstrating the Association’s commitment to Inquiry and Innovation during a recent visit to New Orleans.

AACTE collaborated with member institution, the University of Central Florida, to present the TeachLivE™ Lab (TLE Lab) to members of Grantmakers for Education during their recent conference in Louisiana. Grantmakers for Education is the nation’s largest and most diverse network of education grantmakers dedicated to improving educational outcomes and increasing opportunities for all learners.

How Will Impeachment Proceedings Affect the Congressional Agenda?

Capital with STOP barricade

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

It’s been quite a week in DC.  The most impressive news is having our home team—the Nationals—win the World Series, despite their substantial underdog status. Other than that, the House voted to proceed officially with the impeachment process on a totally partisan basis—and that promises to suck the oxygen out of any sort of Congressional agenda for months.

Are we Headed to a Government Shutdown … Again?

While the Senate made progress on funding bills this week, big hurdles remain. The Senate passed a package of four appropriations bill with a bipartisan vote of 84-9, the first funding bills to pass the Senate. However, Senate Democrats blocked movement on the package of two large spending bills:  Defense and Labor/HHS/Education. They are not happy that President Trump is insisting on funding for his border wall and that the Labor/HHS/Education bill’s spending level is so low.

Black Male Teachers Have Positive Influence on Students of All Races

This op-ed article originally appeared in The State and is reprinted with permission.

I was wasting time on Twitter when I came across a post that stopped me mid-scroll. The original post posed a question: How many black male educators did you have in kindergarten through 12th grade.

One of my former students chimed in with a shocking number: 1…Coach Thorne.

That’s me; that’s who I was. I taught social studies at Blythewood High School for 11 years and was an assistant football coach.

At first glance, the number 1 seems to be an indictment and a referendum on what we in education circles have known forever—we need more black men in the classroom. But upon further inspection, with a little critical analysis, I believe there is power in one.

Statistics tell us that having just one African American teacher in elementary school reduces drop-out rates among black boys by nearly 40% and increases their recognition as gifted students.

But stats don’t tell the story.

A Community College Pathway into Teacher Education Increases Diversity in Teacher Candidates

Teacher reading with young students

The need to diversify the teaching workforce is well documented (Darling-Hammond, 2010). Student demographics across the United States have significantly changed in the last 20 years, with particular increases in bilingual and Hispanic student populations (Aud, Hussar, Kena, Bianco, Frohlich, Kemp, &Tahan, 2011). However, the teaching workforce has not reflected the shift in student demographics, and a growing gap has emerged between the racial and ethnic backgrounds of students and teachers. Because community colleges serve a high percentage of diverse students, a community college pathway into teaching represents a promising approach for increasing the diversity of the teaching workforce.

Preparing Teacher Leaders to Support Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities

Developing Teacher Leaders graphic

The University of Northern Colorado (UNC) holds a long-standing tradition of developing its future teachers as leaders in the community. Since 1889, the school has taken pride in its commitment to teacher excellence. However, never content to settle, the faculty and staff that constitute UNC’s School of Teacher Education (STE) continue to encourage the next generation of teachers to blaze their own trails and inspire change in their communities.

In addition to delivering the widest array of licensure programs in Colorado to meet the state and national needs, STE at UNC offers specialized licensure and endorsement opportunities within its diversity framework. Programs such as the Cumbres Teacher Preparation Program—an inclusive learning community that has served students at UNC since 1997—and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) endorsements urge teachers to utilize culturally responsive curriculum in the classroom.

Aldo Romero, the director of Cumbres, says the Cumbres program “is a co-curricular, student support services and scholarship program. Over the last two decades, Cumbres has evolved to become a comprehensive program designed to support education majors who want to be English as a Second Language teachers (ESL). The program is grounded in four high impact educational practices: living community, learning community, mentorship, and leadership development.” He also says that Cumbres educators are constantly “acquiring new knowledge and skills to support their development to become not only excellent teachers but also exceptional leaders in K-12 settings.”  

Preparing Teacher Candidates across the University for School Safety

During the month of October, AACTE has addressed the importance of school safety in its recent Thought Leadership series. AACTE Dean in Residence Leslie T. Fenwick took time to share in this video how she led a new approach at Howard University to prepare teacher candidates for ensuring safe learning environments in classrooms. In 2010, Howard’s College of Education innovated its undergraduate elementary education program by focusing on ways to better meet the safety needs of local students in its Washington D.C. community.

To evaluate the impact of the new program, “Teacher Talks” were convened with faculty members and novice teachers who were recent graduates of Howard’s College of Education. The graduates shared case studies about their students during the meetings and stories about how many of their children were exposed to violence either in their home or community, oftentimes with a relative being shot. The graduates also reported that their training in human development, with an asset lens, and the knowledge base they received from courses outside of the college of education helped them to reach their students individually as a teacher or connect them to resources in their community.

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