Posts Tagged ‘equity’

A Holmes Scholar’s Reflection on AANHPI Heritage Month

Eleanor Su-Keene

I’m not your model minority. In fact, I spent much of my life contemplating whether I’m actually a minority at all. In the United States, racial socialization runs along a Black/White spectrum, where until recently, Asian American, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (AANHPI) communities existed outside of mainstream racial dialogue. If I may elaborate. As a society, people move through in different ways, and it is only when you come across barriers or lack the privilege afforded to others based on race, that you experience oppression and injustice firsthand. Asian Americans occupy a contentious, invisible space in which race is operationalized as simultaneously a privilege and a form of discrimination. As Cathy Park Hong wrote in Minor Feelings, “Asians lack presence. Asians take up apologetic space. We don’t even have enough presence to be considered real minorities. We’re not racial enough to be token. We’re so post-racial we’re silicon.”

Perspectives of Faculty, Teacher Candidates, and Teachers on EPP Entrance Exams

Teacher working with student at his desk.Performance assessments that serve as a gateway to teacher preparation programs (i.e., Praxis Core, similar state-developed assessments) are intended to measure students’ basic skills in reading, writing, and mathematics. While these skills have no correlation to a candidate’s ability to be successful in a preparation program or relationship to effective teaching, many states require educator preparation programs (EPPs) to ascribe to the use of entrance assessments as a perquisite for program admissions.

The AACTE Consortium for Research-Based and Equitable Assessments (CREA) is examining how cut scores are being set for these assessments and its impact on aspiring teachers and the teacher-of-color pipeline. In its recent infographic, The Impact of Program Entrance Assessments on Aspiring Teachers and the Teacher of Color Pipeline,  AACTE highlights key themes and findings from focus groups held with in-service teachers, teacher candidates of color at various institutions, and faculty of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs).

Untold Stories and a Call to Be Different

Leslie T. FenwickThe AACTE 74th Annual Meeting culminated with a closing session keynote address by nationally renowned educator, education policy scholar, and best-selling author, Leslie T. Fenwick, Ph.D. Throughout her career, Fenwick has made significant contributions to the field of education, serving as the dean of Howard School of Education, and currently as AACTE’s dean in residence. In the closing keynote session, Fenwick shared insight and key themes from her book, Jim Crow’s Pink Slip: The Untold Story of Black Principal and Teacher Leadership, and she concluded with a series of recommendations to diversify the nation’s educator workforce and redefine school reform.

There Were No Good Old Days, but There Are Good Old Ideas

Derek W. BlackDerek Black J.D., a law professor at the University of South Carolina, is among the nation’s foremost experts in education law and policy. He’s published extensively in prestigious journals and been cited by the Supreme Court of the United States. In his book, Schoolhouse Burning: Public Education and the Assault on American Democracy, Black explored the legal and historical basis for the right to public education.

According to Black, the inspiration for Schoolhouse Burning came from the teacher strikes in 2018. Seeing tens of thousands of teachers expressing their right to peacefully protest compelled him to “pay homage to all that [educators] are bringing to the American public.” It is with this spirit that he addressed the attendees at AACTE’s Opening Session at it 2022 Annual Meeting.

The guiding question behind Professor Black’s book is simple: are we moving closer to the original vision of public education, or further away from it? That is, his book chronicled the fight for public education. Using historical and legal precedents such as the Northwest Ordinances of 1785 and 1787, The Colored Peoples Convention in Charleston in 1865, and the Brown V. Board of Education decision, Black explained why the state must provide education as a democratic necessity, and how formerly enslaved African Americans were among the key figures in the fight for educational equality for all.

Focus Group Opportunity on Learner Variability Navigation Tool

AACTE logo | Digital Promise logo

AACTE, in its efforts to revolutionize education, is partnering with Digital Promise to support their work in tackling systems-level transformation that directly address the challenges students face. Digital Promise wants to ensure that each student has equitable access to educators and learning experiences that affirm and honor their identities, expertise, and cultures. Through professional development and its free and open-source tool, the Learner Variability Project LVN), Digital Promise empowers educators to deepen their understanding of learner variability and embrace equitable and inclusive practices that support the whole child. 

Deeper Dive Panelists Discuss MSIs as Drivers of Educational Equity at #AACTE22

Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) as Drivers of Educational Equity Panel

The “Minority Serving Institutions as Drivers of Educational Equity” Deeper Dive session at this year’s Annual Meeting provided insight on the essential role minority serving institutions (MSIs) play in providing postsecondary access to students of color, preparing diverse educators for the workforce, and increasing the economic mobility of low-income, first-generation college students. The session focused on unique programs, supports, and partnerships that these institutions offer to attract and prepare diverse teachers. The panel for the session included deans from four MSI schools or colleges of Education: J. Fidel Turner (Clark Atlanta University), Chinaka DomNwachukwu (California State University-San Bernardino), Stephen Silverman (Florida Atlantic University), and Denelle Wallace Alexander (Norfolk State University).

Profoundly Antiracist Questions About Schools

This article was originally published in Teachers College Record and is reprinted with permission.

There are deeply ingrained structural inequalities in schools that require immediate action. As antiracist educators, we must ask questions about school equity to disrupt the inequality of school outcomes we continue to see today. Who teaches the students? Who gets new schools? Who graduates from high school, and who goes to college? Who gets labeled and sorted? What can (antiracist) educators do? These questions are profoundly antiracist because they are overwhelmingly multicultural. By asking profoundly antiracist questions about schools today, I highlight areas and issues of schooling that require immediate action, antiracist efforts, to address the inequalities that exist as evidenced by educational statistics. Based on the analysis of school outcomes presented in this research note, it becomes clear that Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) students continue to experience disparate school outcomes in America. Such inequalities reveal that BIPOC children are taught by underpaid teachers, learn in schools that are falling apart, are labeled and sorted at disproportionate rates, and endure a curriculum about other people, and generally are being underserved in schools, as evidenced by the school outcomes. Educators must take immediate antiracist actions to ensure that school equity does not continue to be defined by racial inequality.

MACTE Testifies in Support of Funding to Increase a Diverse Teacher Workforce

ACTE_Minnesota_LogoI serve as the legislative liaison for the Minnesota Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (MACTE), a consortium of over 20 public and private institutions of higher education. We represent both urban and rural geographic regions and we range in size. In Minnesota, we are unique in that the governor is a democrat, the house is majority democrat, and the senate is majority republican.

Prior to the launch of the Minnesota legislative session, MACTE developed collaborative legislative priorities that guide our work with the legislature. This year our four main goals are 1) to maintain high quality teacher preparation standards and support initiatives that reflect the research base around teaching methodologies; 2) increase the diversity of the Minnesota teaching force through strategies to recruit, support, prepare, and retain teachers of color; 3) to improve the retention of teachers; and 4) to support high-quality research-based E-12 instructional practices. In my work as the liaison, I attend committee meetings and advocate our support (or opposition) to proposed legislation through written or oral testimony. I am often supported by our MACTE leadership, our faculty who are content area experts, and our teacher candidates.

Honoring Women Leadership in Educator Preparation

National Women's History Month

As another Women’s History Month comes to an end, AACTE wants to acknowledge the achievements of women-identified leaders in educator preparation. The Association kicked off its celebration by asking you, AACTE members, to identify a leader who affected your work as an educator through their mentorship, research, and colleagueship. AACTE is honored to share those responses here and want to congratulate all women members for their contributions to their classrooms and the field each day.

Joan Rhodes, chair, Department of Teaching and Learning and associate professor, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Education
“Dr. Rhodes models skillful leadership and compassion. A transformational leader, she is responsive to the financial and structural needs of the larger institution, while prioritizing the human experience of faculty, staff, and students. She treats department members with dignity, soliciting feedback and input regularly. This collaborative approach led to adapting department practices. Voices previously unheard are now heard and respected. She quietly elevates and lifts all her colleagues and students, creating pathways to leadership roles for all members of the community. She makes me, a junior faculty member, feel seen, heard, and valued while I continue to develop my leadership skills.”

Secretary Cardona Issues Call to Address Nationwide Teacher Shortage and Student Recovery

Today, U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona issued a nationwide call to action for states, higher education leaders, and schools to tap federal resources and work together to address the teacher shortage and aid student recovery. Today’s announcement builds on President Biden’s call in the State of the Union encouraging leaders to use American Rescue Plan funds to address this critical challenge schools and districts across the country are facing. The call to action coincides with Secretary Cardona’s participation in the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching’s Summit on Improvement in Education in San Diego.

“I have always known that a well-prepared, well-supported, well-compensated, and diverse educator workforce is the foundation for student success. Educator vacancies and other staff shortages represent a real challenge as our schools work to recover, falling hardest on students of color, students in rural communities, students from low-income backgrounds, students with disabilities, and multilingual learners. That’s why I’m proud that the American Rescue Plan has equipped states, school districts, and colleges and universities that prepare our educators with unprecedented financial resources to help overcome this challenge,” said Secretary Cardona. “Today, I am calling on states, districts, and institutions of higher education to use ARP funds to address the teacher shortage and increase the number of teacher candidates prepared to enter the teaching profession. My team will continue to advise state and local leaders on how they can seize this moment; put COVID relief dollars to work in our schools; and achieve a lasting, equitable recovery for our students.”

Learn to Address Censorship through Collective Action and Messaging

Workshop: Educators Addressing Censorship through Collective Action & MessagingAACTE continues its collaboration with AERA’s Division K: Teaching and Teacher Education to produce an in-depth, scaffolded, three-part series of professional learning opportunities addressing the recent uptick in education censorship across the nation. The first presentation of the series took place as a Deeper Dive session during AACTE’s Annual Meeting in New Orleans. On April 12, AACTE and AERA Division K will co-host a workshop: Educators Addressing Censorship through Collective Action & Messaging, which will include members of our P-20 education system. The third session in our series is a Town Hall taking place during the AERA Conference in late April where Lynn Gangone, AACTE CEO and president will be moderating alongside AERA Executive Director, Felice Levine, and Division K Chair, Dorothea Anagnostopoulos.

Webinar to Highlight Key Findings from AACTE’s Signature Report

The Colleges of Education: A National Portrait is AACTE’s signature report on schools, colleges, and departments of education. The second edition was released today and AACTE is hosting a webinar to review its findings on Monday, March 28 at 1:00 p.m. ET.

This report is a major vehicle for AACTE to tell the story of colleges of education nationwide and for members to situate their own programs in the broader context of the trends that are shaping the profession. Education preparation program faculty are encouraged to use it to communicate with their institution’s leadership, PK-12 partners, and other key cnstituents about the issues, trends, and challenges impacting educator preparation.

This year, in addition to describing the work of colleges of education, the people who do that work, and the students they serve, the National Portrait includes a special analysis on the important contributions that community colleges make to educator preparation.

Join me and my co-author Weadé James on March 28 for this member-only, informative webinar.  Register today.

AACTE’s National Portrait Sounds the Alarm on Declining Interest in Education Careers

Today, AACTE (American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education) releases the second edition of Colleges of Education: A National Portrait. In addition to updating information on colleges of education and their leaders, faculty, and students, this edition features a special analysis on the contributions of community colleges to educator preparation.

This update of AACTE’s signature report offers a comprehensive picture of the nation’s schools, colleges, and departments of education: the work that they do, the people who do that work, and the students they serve. The report describes the key trends and challenges in meeting the nation’s need for highly skilled educators.

Colleges and universities can benchmark their programs against peers, gain innovative ideas to grow and diversify enrollment through community college partnerships, and describe to stakeholders the challenges confronting educator preparation.

Capitol Hill Addresses Spending, Student Loans, HBCUs and LGBTQ+ Rights

Graduation hat with diploma and moneyThis 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 the eve of the one-year anniversary of the passage of the American Rescue Plan Act, Congress passed a Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 Omnibus Spending Bill. The FY22 bill includes increases for education, but not nearly at the level that was originally requested by the Biden Administration. Considerable work lies ahead to secure a robust federal investment to support rebuilding and diversifying the special educator and specialized instructional personnel pipeline.

Teaching Women’s History Through an Intersectional Lens

You may have heard the term “intersectionality” a lot lately, a term coined by Kimberlee Crenshaw in 1989 to describe how systems of oppression overlap to create distinct experiences for people with multiple identity categories. Those familiar with Crenshaw’s work know that the term was once used academically purely to shape legal conversations about racial and social injustice in systems, most notably policing. Now, “intersectionality” is part of the national lexicon, being used in the forefront of the country’s debates around racial and social injustice in the last few years; however, that should not dissuade educators from looking at their work through this lens.

For educators, intersectionality is used to frame the experiences of historical and current figures who have multiple identities when they teach. For example, during Women’s History Month, it’s important for educators to consider how the experiences of women of color, queer and trans women, women with disabilities, women with different body types, and multi-lingual women differ, and then represent them as such in their curriculum. Educators can build this intersectional teaching muscle by having conversations about their diverse experiences with one another and, as teachers, share research and resources that elevate the truth of women with intersectional identities in our schools. This is why, on International Women’s Day, we asked several of our members and staff to answer the question:

Why is integrating women’s history through an intersectional lens important to you and your work in education?

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