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Global/International Education Opportunities and Resources

If you are interested in international education and in preparing globally competent teachers, here are some resources and opportunities to consider:

Summer 2014 Fulbright-Hays Seminars Abroad Program in China

The Fulbright-Hays Seminars Abroad Program provides opportunities for overseas experiences to teachers and other PK-12 personnel, teacher educators, and administrators with responsibilities for program or curriculum development in fields related to humanities, languages, and area studies. Seminars are designed to provide a broad and introductory cultural orientation to a particular country. The program is geared toward educators with little or no experience in the host country who demonstrate the need to develop and enhance their curriculum through short-term study and travel abroad.

New Report on Cultivating a Principal Pipeline

A new report from the Wallace Foundation’s Principal Pipeline Initiative highlights practices for the preparation and support of new principals. Cultivating Talent Through a Principal Pipeline is the second in a series of evaluations of the initiative, prepared by Policy Studies Associates. It describes results from the initiative’s first 2 years as participating districts worked to beef up their principal corps through training and ongoing support.

Professional Learning Communities Support Principal Pipeline Initiative

As part of its Principal Pipeline Initiative, the Wallace Foundation last week convened its National Provider and Graduate Principal Professional Learning Community (National Provider PLC). I attended the meeting on behalf of AACTE, which is a communications partner for the initiative.

The National Provider PLC, launched in April, offers an opportunity for the initiative’s principal preparation providers, program alumni, and district administrators to collaborate in determining the most effective and efficient way to identify, develop, and support effective school leaders. Each district in the Principal Pipeline Initiative—Charlotte-Mecklenburg (NC), Denver (CO), Gwinnett County (GA), Hillsborough County (FL), New York City (NY), and Prince George’s County (MD)—also participates in a local PLC. In all, 20 principal preparation programs and 20 graduate principals are involved in this change-driving work, and, of the programs, half are AACTE member institutions.

Budget Cuts Threaten Special Education Services, Survey Shows

Recent budget cuts at the federal, state, and local levels are affecting the delivery of special education services for students with disabilities, according to a new survey conducted by the National Coalition on Personnel Shortages in Special Education and Related Services (NCPSSERS), of which AACTE is a member.

The survey of more than 1,000 special education professionals from all 50 states, which was featured in Education Week, shows that the impact of federal, state, and local budget cuts on special education is most evident in an increase in caseload, class size, and reduced professional development opportunities. 

Career Advancement for Teachers Targeted in New Report

On December 12, the National Network of State Teachers of the Year (NNSTOY) and Pearson’s Center for Educator Effectiveness released a research report at an interactive launch event at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute.

At the event, a panel of several former teachers of the year joined American Enterprise Institute Resident Scholar Frederick Hess to discuss the conditions necessary to develop sustainable career pathways that might make teaching a more attractive career option for a new generation of educators. The panel also discussed the benefits of teacher preparation resources such as edTPA and the role of educator preparation programs in enhancing teacher leadership roles.

Register Now for a Free Webinar on Evaluating Principal Preparation Programs

On December 17 at 2:00 p.m. EST, AACTE will offer a free webinar, Assessing Principal Preparation Program Quality: Lessons From the Field.

Over the summer, AACTE surveyed its members with principal preparation programs to better understand the characteristics of such programs and to identify areas in which members would like assistance. Program evaluation was one such area—which is not surprising, because evaluating preparation program quality is necessarily complex. It can be challenging to identify indicators of program quality, develop needed resources (including data and personnel), and navigate the political terrain that is often associated with program evaluation.

AACTE, Partners Release Guide for State Policy

A groundbreaking policy guide released today provides state lawmakers and education advocates with a blueprint for practical changes to improve teaching quality in America. The guide recommends policies based on research and state models that have been highly effective in developing and sustaining talented and diverse teaching forces that prepare all students for college, career, and life.

Webinar Spotlights Teacher Preparation for Online Instruction

On November 20, an interactive webinar sponsored by the Midwest Regional Educational Laboratory at American Institutes for Research addressed the preparation of preservice teachers to educate PK-12 students in online, hybrid, and blended environments. Mary Herring, associate dean of the College of Education at the University of Iowa and chair of AACTE’s Committee on Innovation and Technology, and Bryan Zugelder, executive director for undergraduate affairs and partnerships at the University of Central Florida’s College of Education and Human Performance, discussed the preservice teaching landscape as it relates to online learning; the implications of virtual education on preservice teacher preparation programs; and the skills that current research and theory suggest preservice teachers should have to be successful in online and blended learning programs.

Progress on Principal Preparation

Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of attending a meeting of the Wallace Foundation’s Principal Pipeline Initiative. The foundation regularly convenes the initiative’s participants to provide time and space for them to assess their efforts to transform the way they recruit, prepare, and support principals and to plan for further work.

In early 2013, the Wallace Foundation awarded AACTE a grant to serve as one of its communications partners engaged in disseminating research about education leadership as well as the practices and research emerging from the foundation’s Principal Pipeline Initiative.

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.

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.

November 12 Webinar: Developing the Dispositions of Preservice Teachers for a Culture of Continuous Professional Learning

Webinar adOn Tuesday, November 12, AACTE and the Kentucky Association of Colleges for Teacher Education present “Developing the Dispositions of Preservice Teachers for a Culture of Continuous Professional Learning,” from 3:00 to 4:15 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.

This is the second webinar in a two-part series sponsored by a grant from Learning Forward, making registration free for AACTE members. The series addresses how educator preparation programs can develop professional learning-ready teachers and school leaders.

Department of Education Solicits Comments on Highly Qualified Teacher Data Collection

In response to a recent solicitation from the U.S. Department of Education, AACTE will be submitting comments on a proposed data collection regarding “highly qualified teachers.” We also sent an action alert November 4 to members of our Grassroots Action Network, encouraging members to send their own comments as well.

In September 2012—more than a year ago—AACTE and the 90+ other members of the Coalition for Teaching Quality won a significant victory when Congress passed a law requiring the Department of Education to collect data regarding the number of teachers-in-training currently serving as teachers of record. Specifically, the Department of Education is required to submit a report to Congress on the extent to which students with disabilities, English learners, students in rural areas, and students from low-income families are taught by teachers-in-training. For more background on this issue, see this article from AACTE’s Advisor.

Free Webinar to Address Preservice Preparation for Online Teaching

Making Connections: Teaching Preservice Teachers to Teach OnlineThe Midwest Regional Educational Laboratory at American Institutes for Research will host a free webinar Wednesday, November 20, 1:30-3:00 p.m. CST, to address the question of how we prepare preservice teachers to work in online and blended settings.

“Making Connections: Teaching Preservice Teachers to Teach Online” will feature Kathryn Kennedy, director of research at the International Association for K-12 Online Learning, and Leanna Archambault, assistant professor at Arizona State University, who coauthored the 2012 study Offering Preservice Teachers Field Experiences in K-12 Online Learning: A National Survey of Teacher Education Programs.

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