Leading Educator Preparation Association Releases New Strategic Plan

The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) publicly announced today their new strategic plan effective through 2023. The plan reflects the Association’s ongoing commitment to high-quality educator preparation while leveraging opportunities to be forward thinking in addressing challenges that come from an ever-changing educational landscape. “It positions AACTE to truly revolutionize educator preparation,” said Kim Metcalf, chair of the AACTE ...

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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 ...

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New AACTE Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Video Series Now Available

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 ...

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Students of color are not the only winners when our school populations are diverse. Statistics show that white students also benefit substantially from attending integrated schools as diverse classrooms promote increased critical thinking and problem solving among students who work alongside students with differing perspectives and backgrounds than their own. (Getty Images)

Walk the integration walk, New York

This article, written by AACTE Director of Government Relations K. Ward Cummings, originally appeared in the Daily News Opinion section and is reprinted with permission. The civil rights leader Malcolm X once famously said that the most segregated hour in American life is high noon on Sunday. If he were alive today, he might also include those weekday hours between 9 ...

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An Industry of Progress, Promise

Note: This op-ed was submitted to The New York Times but was not published.

A recent column by Bill Keller in The New York Times, “An Industry of Mediocrity,” highlighted a 2005 report by the well-respected Arthur Levine that concluded that the programs that prepare our nation’s educators “range from inadequate to appalling” and set the premise that the profession is a “contended cartel” of low-quality programs that should “feel threatened.” As leaders of AACTE, we view Mr. Keller’s column not as a threat but as an opportunity to do what we do best: educate.

Early Childhood Education Bills Introduced in Congress

Several early childhood education bills were introduced recently in Congress.

A bipartisan bill, the Strong Start for America’s Children Act (H.R. 3461/S. 1697), was introduced November 13 in the House and Senate that would expand access to and quality of early learning programs for children. The bill was introduced in the Senate by Tom Harkin (D-IA), chair of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, and in the House by Representatives George Miller (D-CA), ranking member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, and Richard Hanna (R-NY). Hanna’s endorsement makes the bill bipartisan, although no Republicans in the Senate support the legislation.

TAG—You’re It!

A great new AACTE program has hit the ground running, as many of your colleagues are already putting it to good use by creating “topical action groups” (TAGs).

The TAG program, which replaces the Association’s former “special study groups,” allows members to initiate or join action-oriented forums around a professional topic of importance, with funding and other support from AACTE.

Here are two examples of newly established TAGs and how they are using AACTE funding and support to further a topic of professional interest:

Building Allies Through Community Engagement

You all know about the significance of “telling your story.” As an advocacy and public-relations strategy, teacher educators should regularly communicate with media outlets and policy makers to promote their programs’ strengths such as innovative practices, state-of-the art technologies employed by faculty, the qualities of matriculating candidates, and the impact program completers are making in PK-12 schools.

Indeed, AACTE has long encouraged members—collectively, through state chapters, and individually—to build outreach efforts through advocacy and communication strategies. Today I want to remind you of the importance of also engaging members of your local community in these efforts. I’m not talking about your service work here; this is about strengthening the relevance and perceived value of your institution and program within the community.

National Briefing Heralds Launch of edTPA, Releases Field Test Data

AACTE President Sharon P. Robins speaks at the breifing
AACTE President Sharon P. Robinson speaks at the briefing

On November 8, AACTE marked the national launch of edTPA with a briefing in front of a standing-room-only audience at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. A report released at the briefing presents results of 2 years of field testing and recommends a passing score for edTPA, the first preservice performance-based assessment available to every educator preparation program across the country.

The briefing’s panelists—including a classroom teacher who completed edTPA in her preparation program, a teacher educator, state policy leaders, and edTPA partners—celebrated the new measure of teaching readiness as evidence that the teacher preparation profession is taking control of its future. Panelists said using edTPA as part of a multi-measure assessment system encourages continuous improvement by both candidates and programs, and it strengthens partnerships between the PK-12 community and teacher preparation programs. They also agreed that implementing the assessment with integrity will take time and the engagement of all stakeholders.

AACTE Celebrates Official Launch of edTPA

Today marks a proud accomplishment of the teacher preparation community and our partners as we celebrate the launch of the first nationally available, standards-based performance assessment for preservice teachers: edTPA.

edTPA was created for the profession by the profession and is already in use by nearly 500 teacher preparation providers in 32 states and the District of Columbia. With edTPA now fully operational, every preparation program in the country has access to a rigorous, reliable assessment that will give us confidence that aspiring teachers are ready to take charge of their classroom on Day One. This is truly a transformational moment in teacher preparation.

AACTE Congratulates New Committee Members

Please join AACTE in welcoming the following new appointees to its standing committees, effective March 1, 2014:

Committee on Global Diversity
Judit Szente, University of Central Florida

Committee on Government Relations and Advocacy
Suzann Girtz, Gonzaga University (WA)
Joen Larson, Ashford University (IA)

Committee on Innovation and Technology
Jeffrey Carpenter, Elon University (NC)
Christina Dehler, California State Polytechnic University Pomona

edTPA Implementation Conference Draws 400+

The annual edTPA Implementation Conference convened November 1-2 at the University of San Diego (CA) with the theme “Evidence of Learning and Practice: Teacher Performance Assessment by the Profession, for the Profession.” More than 400 higher education administrators, faculty, supervisors, and state education agency representatives were able to deepen their understanding of edTPA, ask important questions, and discuss strategies and best practices with their colleagues from across the country.

With edTPA now nationally available and being used by teacher preparation programs in 32 states plus the District of Columbia, this conference allowed teacher preparation professionals to share their trials and triumphs with edTPA implementation and plan for the future of their programs, institutions, and the teacher preparation field as a whole. The conference was cosponsored by the Stanford Center for Assessment, Learning, and Equity (SCALE) and AACTE and came just a week before a National Press Club briefing, to be held today in Washington, DC, to discuss the edTPA field test results and nationwide launch.

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