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CEEDAR Center Releases ‘Innovation Configurations’ for Program Evaluation

The Collaboration for Effective Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform Center (CEEDAR Center) has released three new program evaluation tools, called innovation configurations, in partnership with the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders at the American Institutes for Research. The innovation configurations are designed to help evaluate teacher preparation programs and professional development activities for the extent to which they incorporate evidence-based practices in a particular area:

Innovation at Montclair State University: Preparing Teachers for High-Need STEM Fields

The Innovations Inventory of AACTE’s Innovation Exchange is an online database highlighting members’ pioneering practices in educator preparation that have shown a positive impact on issues of student learning, preparation program advancement, or educator workforce needs. This blog post is one in a series highlighting entries from the inventory. To request inclusion of your institution’s innovations, contact Zach VanHouten at zvanhouten@aacte.org

Over the past few years, Montclair State University has developed a series of programs geared toward increasing the supply of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) teachers. Programs including the Newark-Montclair Urban Teacher Residency (NMUTR) and the Integrative Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (iSTEM) program are contributing to the national initiative “100Kin10,” which seeks to prepare 100,000 new STEM teachers by 2021.

CEEDAR Center Offers Intensive Technical Assistance to SEAs, EPPs

The Collaboration for Effective Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform (CEEDAR) Center, a national center funded by the U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs, seeks state partners—including state education agencies (SEAs) and educator preparation programs (EPPs)—to work collaboratively on teacher and leader effectiveness across the career continuum to help students with disabilities achieve college and career readiness in inclusive settings.

States may apply to the CEEDAR Center for intensive technical assistance for up to 4 years. Grantees will create strategic partnerships among SEAs and EPPs to support educator preparation faculty and administrators, researchers, state policy makers, and school-based professionals in building and sustaining an aligned, coherent, and systemic approach to personnel preparation. An online application must be submitted by August 1 by the state’s chief school officer or designee, in collaboration with the partnering SEA and EPPs.

Coalition for Teaching Quality Submits Commentary on HQT Data Collection

Tomorrow, April 18, is the deadline for public comment on the proposed “highly qualified teacher” (HQT) data collection by the U.S. Department of Education. A detailed letter submitted yesterday by the Coalition for Teaching Quality hails the proposed collection as “an important first step towards meeting the legislative intent” of Congress’ directive to report on the extent to which students in certain high-need categories are taught by teachers who are labeled as “highly qualified,” but who are actually teachers-in-training in alternative routes. 

University of Florida Launches CEEDAR Center for Teaching Students With Disabilities

The College of Education at the University of Florida last week announced the launch of a new center on “Collaboration for Effective Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform”—also known as the CEEDAR Center—focused on supporting states in developing teachers to prepare students with disabilities for college and careers. CEEDAR is funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs, receiving $15 million over 3 years with the possibility of receiving additional funds for an additional 2 years.

Proposals Sought for Conference on Postsecondary Ed for Students With Disabilities

A call for proposals is now available for the 2014 State of the Art Conference on Postsecondary Education and Individuals With Intellectual Disabilities. The conference, to be held in Virginia in November, is cosponsored by the Helen A. Kellar Institute for Human disabilities at George Mason University (VA) and the Taishoff Center for Inclusive Higher Education at Syracuse University (NY).

March/April Issue of JTE Now Online

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.

Federal Spending Bill Maintains Investment in Educator Preparation

Last week, President Obama signed an omnibus spending bill funding the government through the end of the fiscal year. This $1.1 trillion plan restores approximately two thirds ($1.6 billion) of the cuts made to the U.S. Department of Education in last year’s sequestration.

Perhaps most important to educator preparation programs, the omnibus maintains funding for Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP) grants, which fund partnerships between institutions of higher education and high-need school districts to create clinical and/or residency programs at the prebaccalaureate or graduate level. This means that the U.S. Department of Education will fund a new round of grants to partnerships seeking to reform teacher preparation programs. Stay tuned for more updates from AACTE on how to apply for this grant funding.

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. 

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