The “In the States” feature by Kaitlyn Brennan is a weekly update to keep members informed on state-level activities impacting the education and educator preparation community.
Last week, education officials in Florida approved new standards for teaching African American history. The standards are being considered by many as an effort to “purposefully omit or rewrite key historical facts about the Black experience.” Embedded within the standards is instruction on “how slaves developed skills which, in some instances, could be applied for their personal benefit” and lessons that touch on acts of violence perpetrated “against and by” African Americans. Additionally, Black history lessons for younger students require students to only recognize Black investors and artists. A Florida teacher who expressed concerns surrounding students only having to recognize such individuals saying, “As a teacher, we focus on the verb in the standards, and these are the lowest level of cognitive rigor.”
The Florida Education Association submitted a letter in opposition of the standards to the Florida Board of Education, saying in part:
“Today — in the year 2023, we stand as a diverse coalition demanding you adhere to the law and adopt standards that require the instruction of history, culture, experiences, and contributions of African Americans in the state’s K-12 curriculum as directed in FS 1003.42. We owe the next generation of scholars the opportunity to know the full unvarnished history of this state and country and all who contributed to it — good and bad.”
The new standards are backed unanimously by the state Board of Education and encompass the “anti-woke” policies touted by Republican Governor and Presidential Candidate Ron Desantis.
Ten years and 55 graduates later, UNM is responding to a critical need for Board Certified Behavior Analysts.
Copeland teaches class for ABA certificate.
This article was originally published by The University of New Mexico Newsroom.
UNM’s Department of Special Education, in the College of Education & Human Sciences (COEHS) is filling a critical need in New Mexico.
Now with its 55th graduate, the Graduate Certificate Program in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is creating Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) for the state. It’s a proper milestone for a program which just hit its 10th anniversary.
“It makes me feel really excited. Depending on which statistics you’re looking at, we have been identified as a state where sometimes there are no behavioral health providers in an entire county, so for us to have prepared these individuals who are now providing this critical service for children and families just really warms my heart,” Special Education Department Professor Susan Copeland said.
Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) are responsible for teaching, instruction and behavioral support to individuals with developmental disabilities. While many focus on autism spectrum disorder, the field covers children and adults who have intellectual disabilities or emotional behavior disturbances.
Pride month is more than a celebration; it’s an opportunity to reignite the fight for equality within the LGBTQ+ community and other historically marginalized communities in allyship with all those who believe that our P-20 schools should be safe and inclusive spaces for all youth. As Pride Month comes to a close, AACTE is sharing its updated toolkit, Resources to Support LGBTQ+ Inclusion in Ed Prep and P-20 Schools, which can be found on AACTE’s Racial and Social Justice Hub.
On June 19, 1865, the emancipation of enslaved Black people in the United States was realized when Union troops arrived in Galveston Bay, Texas, to enforce the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation for these citizens. The newly freed people called this day “Juneteenth.” Also known as Emancipation Day, Juneteenth is the commemorations of Black and African American people in the United States seizing their freedom that was denied to them despite their contributions to the growth of the nation’s economy and culture. While organizations around the country, including AACTE, will close their offices to give time to celebrate, reflect, and appreciate this history, more than half of the states in the country have introduced or passed legislation to prohibit teaching about structural racism, and you cannot fully teach and appreciate Juneteenth without acknowledging structural racism.
May is Jewish American Heritage Month. AACTE joins the nation in celebrating the values, culture, and contributions of Jewish people by encouraging all educators to think broadly and critically about how to teach the diverse and complex history and experience of Jewish people. This is more critical than ever, as noted by Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine Lhamon in Dear Colleague Letter issued in conjunction with the Biden-Harris administration’s national strategy to counter antisemitism; in which Lhamon reminds us of the nationwide rise in reports of antisemitic harassment, including in schools.
Since its designation by Congress in 1999, National Military Appreciation Month in May, is the nation’s opportunity to honor the service and sacrifice of servicemembers and their families. Part of honoring that service is to ensure active and veteran military have access to educator preparation for those seeking to be teachers or administrators in the nation’s PK–12 schools.
In May, AACTE joins together with cultural institutions, school districts, municipalities, state legislatures, public servants, and non-profit organizations around the country to celebrate the immeasurable contributions of the Asian-American, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander Heritage (AANHPI) community and recommit to the work of making sure that all people have the opportunity to be a part of the nation’s exceptional and equitable education system. AACTE encourage members to share the history, culture, and achievements of those who identify as AANHPI in their classrooms and on their campuses in observance of AANHPI Heritage Month.
This month, AACTE joins together with cultural institutions, school districts, municipalities, state legislatures, public servants, and non-profit organizations around the country to celebrate the immeasurable contributions of Arab Americans to our nation. As part of National Arab American Heritage Month this April. AACTE recommits to the work of making sure that all people have the opportunity to be a part of an exceptional and equitable education system as part of the American dream. AACTE encourages its members to share the history, culture, and achievements of Arab Americans in their classrooms and on their campuses during the month of April, such as the Arab American National Museum offers Educator Resources for free.
As part of its strategic plan to increase access and opportunities for diverse voices in educator preparation programs, AACTE will set up a database where members — faculty and teacher candidates — can post their research and publications to be cited by the field. If you identify as Arab or Arab American, you are encouraged to share your educator preparation research with your peers. This form also provides you with an opportunity to create a profile so that people can learn more about your research interests and other works.
Please take a moment to fill out the AACTE Cited Research Database Form or send it to your Arab/Arab American colleagues who may want to take advantage of the opportunity to highlight their work on AACTE’s website.
Are you interested in advocating and bolstering social, emotional, behavioral, and mental health (SEBMH) content and practice in your teacher education program? As the director of professional development for the Scanlan Center for School Mental Health at the University of Iowa, I invite teacher education professionals to join AACTE’s newly-formed SEBMH Topical Action Group (TAG).
AACTE is still accepting applications from all AACTE member faculty and Ph.D. students who are interested in joining the Longview-supported Global Education Faculty PLC.
The Global Education Faculty Professional Learning Community (PLC ) will provide a peer support network and professional development to faculty and Ph.D. students at comprehensive teacher preparation programs to effectively integrate global teaching competencies within their curriculum and practices.
AACTE joins scores of organizations in celebrating this year’s Civic Learning Week, which takes place from March 6 – 10. This is a critical moment to call for increased understanding of the essentials of our government, how to engage with elected officials and understanding the rights and responsibilities of citizens.
Join AACTE as we celebrate Black History Month. This year, AACTE’s 75th Annual Meeting falls in February, the theme of which is Innovation through Inspiration: Remembering the Past to Revolutionize the Future; and how could we revolutionize the future of education and education and education preparation to ensure all learners receive a high-quality, equitable education without Black educators? AACTE is excited to offer programming throughout Annual Meeting and its preconference events, February 23 – 26, dedicated to supporting Black Educators and the representation of Black history and perspectives and curriculum and educator preparation policy and practice.
Through the generous support of the Longview Foundation, the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) is launching a new Global Education Faculty Professional Learning Community (PLC). This PLC will provide a peer support network and professional development to faculty at comprehensive teacher preparation programs to effectively integrate global teaching competencies within their curriculum and practices.
A long-time supporter of AACTE, Longview Foundation Executive Director Jennifer Manise reflects on why the foundation has invested in AACTE since 1967: “the Longview Foundation made a grant to AACTE in its inaugural year to bring global perspectives to teacher education programs. In 2023, Longview awarded our eighteenth grant to AACTE. Together, we will support faculty development and innovative programming to prepare new educators and their students to be globally ready.”
Quality real-world Science Technology Engineering and Mathematic (STEM) educational resources are needed within programs of teacher education and P-12 classrooms. The National Association of Manufacturing (2018) reported that the United States will need to fill 3.5 million jobs by 2025, with more than two million going unfilled due to lack of highly skilled in-demand candidates. The US Defense Industrial Base Industrial Capabilities Report (2021) showed a need for STEM education by stating that the STEM shortage is quickly approaching crisis status. This report is a congressionally-mandated, annual requirement in which the Secretary of Defense informs the armed services committees on the actions, investments, and overall health of the U.S. defense industrial base.
This weekly Washington Update is intended to keep members informed on Capitol Hill activities impacting the educator preparation community. The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.
On Friday afternoon President Biden signed a short-term funding bill, otherwise known as a continuing resolution or CR, that will keep the government open and funded through December 23. The CR keeps the government open and freezes funding levels at their FY22 levels while appropriators finalize a deal for the FY23 spending bill. Stay tuned as we now have one final busy week in Washington before Members of Congress break for the holiday.