Last week, I participated in a summit at Lock Haven University in Pennsylvania on implementing and preparing for the Pennsylvania Core Standards. In attendance were the institution’s president and vice provost along with faculty, deans, and other administrators from throughout the university. Administrators and teachers from nearby PK-12 school districts as well as representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education also joined us.
Following my keynote presentation discussing the fundamental instructional shifts of the Pennsylvania Core, all vested stakeholder groups took part in a conversations addressing the impact of the standards on their programs and the supplemental changes necessary to enact to support implementation. Among the suggested changes were strengthening ties with the PK-12 districts to provide necessary clinical experiences for candidates and deepening core content knowledge of both in-service and preservice teachers. One great idea was for the university to host academies throughout the summer to provide training for PK-12 teachers and administrators.
The deadline to apply for AACTE’s new research fellowship was March 28, and we are ecstatic about the number of submissions we received! Nearly 80 research teams from a variety of member institutions submitted applications to study educator preparation pedagogy and/or educator workforce development.
The AACTE Research Fellowship for Educator Preparation is a new program established under the Innovation Exchange that aims to cultivate emerging scholars and support high-quality research in the area of educator preparation. Aligned with AACTE’s mission and strategic goals, the research fellowship will engage education scholars in collecting, documenting, and disseminating research on innovative educator preparation practices to fuel program improvement and influence policy decisions.
This post was originally published on the Learning First Alliance’s Public School Insights blog.
The teaching profession is well known for losing almost 50% of its novices in the first 5 years. This churn is concentrated in high-need schools, which have a hard time attracting teachers in the first place. Not only does this “revolving door” phenomenon increase the chance that students with the greatest educational needs will be taught by an inexperienced teacher, but it is also financially costly in recruitment, staffing, and induction burdens.
On March 19, I attended the release event of Beginners in the Classroom: What the Changing Demographics of Teaching Mean for Schools, Students, and Society, a report that examines the causes, conditions, and consequences of the rise of less-experienced teachers in the classroom.
Issued by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, the report cites research showing that the shift toward greater numbers of inexperienced teachers has “serious financial, structural, and educational consequences for American public education—straining budgets, disrupting school cultures, and, most significantly, depressing student achievement.” (AACTE, too, seeks to address these problems through its Educator Workforce Advisory Task Force, an initiative of the new Innovation Exchange.)
Did you attend the edTPA-related sessions at AACTE’s Annual Meeting this year? If not, here’s a taste of what you missed! Click here to view a list of the descriptions and presenters for the various sessions that provided attendees the opportunity to converse with other users of edTPA.
A highlight of the conference was the edTPA breakfast hosted by SCALE, which drew more than 200 attendees. In her opening remarks, AACTE President/CEO Sharon P. Robinson championed edTPA, emphasizing that it was developed by and for the people in the room. She also encouraged audience members to advocate for edTPA in their communities. Afterward, Ray Pecheone, SCALE’s executive director, described in detail the developmental process of edTPA. He explained topics such as standard setting and state policy and announced that SCALE would conduct validity and consequential studies in the weeks ahead. Finally, attendees engaged in a question and answer session with Andrea Whittaker, SCALE’s director of teacher performance assessment, and other representatives.
The AACTE Board of Directors met February 28 immediately prior to the Annual Meeting in Indianapolis. The meeting agenda, led by outgoing Chair Fayneese Miller (University of Vermont), ranged from Innovation Exchange projects and state chapter relations to the awards program and various governance issues, including election of a new Executive Committee.
Effective March 1, the new Executive Committee of the Board includes Chair Julie Underwood (University of Wisconsin-Madison), Past Chair Fayneese Miller, and Secretary Tim Wall (Northwest Missouri State University) along with the newly elected Chair-Elect Mark Ginsberg (George Mason University) and at-large representatives Jane Bray (Old Dominion University, with a 2-year term) and Dwight Watson (University of Northern Iowa, with a 1-year term).
AACTE today announced the official launch of an initiative to support innovation in the professional community and speed the pace of change in university-based educator preparation. The Innovation Exchange will serve as a forum for AACTE members, partners, and other constituents to share experiences and findings as they work together to address the most urgent issues of student achievement, curriculum reform, and educator preparation program advancement.
Through this national initiative, AACTE will seek to strengthen educator preparation, demonstrate the necessity and effectiveness of educator preparation, and enhance members’ opportunities to collaborate on key issues.
The March/April 2014 issue of the Journal of Teacher Education (JTE) is now available online. See what Volume 65 Number 2 has to offer!
- In this month’s editorial, “Research as a Catalyst for Change,” JTE‘s editors at Penn State University relate the issue’s contents to AACTE’s 66th Annual Meeting theme, Taking Charge of Change. Heralding the theme as an opportunity to champion the role of research in informing policy and practice, the editors highlight the articles’ contributions to knowledge about innovative practices in the development of both preservice and in-service educators.
This post also appears on the AACTE Annual Meeting site.
AACTE and TeachingWorks are collaborating on a strand of sessions at the 66th Annual Meeting that will examine the challenges of preparing novice teachers for practice and explore potential solutions. This strand will provide a forum for sharing ideas and learning from programs that are taking on the challenges of building practice-based teacher education. It will also address implications of the Common Core State Standards for teacher preparation.
The pace of change is quickening as educator preparation programs engage in a variety of reform efforts. Are you interested in learning more about how they are taking charge of change? A major forum at AACTE’s Annual Meeting in Indianapolis will highlight reforms in several programs and the ways they are working with PK-16 partners and communities to meet emerging challenges.
During this forum, the following panelists will share their efforts and partnership work to reinvent programs at their institutions:
A major forum at AACTE’s 2014 Annual Meeting will highlight lessons for transforming education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and for bridging the STEM achievement gap. To advance STEM education in PK-12 and improve access for disadvantaged students, educator preparation programs will have to produce career-ready teachers who have deep content knowledge in mathematics and science and pedagogical skills to teach to the differing needs of students to improve their achievement.
At the forum, a panel of education researchers, teacher educators, and practitioners will identify social and cultural barriers that contribute to persistent education inequities. Additionally, they will discuss effective education policies and innovative initiatives that promote progress in narrowing educational disparities in STEM.
A major forum at AACTE’s 2014 Annual Meeting will feature efforts to redesign elementary preparation programs so that they are aligned with current PK-12 school expectations, provide deeper content engagement, and offer pedagogical practices with a greater impact.
Preparing elementary school teachers can be challenging, as they need to be well-versed in many subject areas and particularly attuned to the developmental needs of young learners. Indeed, many preparation programs have struggled to produce coherent curriculum to effectively prepare teacher candidates for the early grades.