Racist Curricula in the 21st Century Do Exist
Any curriculum, even the most enlightened, has traces of racism. This is simply because we all have biases that come through in multiple ways. Our responsibility as educators is to be critically self-reflective and continuously monitor ourselves, our work, and our interactions with both the students we teach and those around us.
Invariably, believing we are culturally and linguistically responsive and sustaining, is an indication that we still have work to do. This is because we are always in a state of becoming. New experiences and knowledge expand our ways of thinking and intersect with our lived experiences making the familiar strange. This is true for individuals and curriculum. That is why continuous critical self-reflection is essential as it affords us the opportunity to negotiate uncomfortable and challenging spaces, experiences, and interactions. It is through this disruption that we learn.
This article originally appeared in the Chatanoogan.com and is reprinted with permission.
As educators, we are concerned about the quality and quantity of applicants entering the field of education. Our members have often been catalysts for innovative solutions to the many challenges facing education. This is why we take an interest in the next generation of educators and why we strive to improve their experience and support as they transition from teacher candidate to classroom teacher.
In 1986, education school deans from the top universities developed a critical report that attributed much of the blame for struggling public schools on the training teachers were receiving in college.
Research reminds us that although we spend millions of dollars and thousands of hours on teacher preparation courses, we do not have much evidence justifying some of those requirements in Colleges of Education. Nor do policymakers really know how to measure and define a successful teacher training program.
AACTE recently released its 2020-2023 Strategic Plan, which includes a new vision statement: AACTE, its members, and partners collaborate to revolutionize education for all learners. Aligned with the new strategic plan, Ed Prep Matters is launching a new column called Revolutionizing Education to showcase the many ways the Association and member institutions are moving beyond traditional perspectives and are pioneering positive change in educator preparation.
The Revolutionizing Education column is an opportunity for member institutions and partners to share the leading-edge research, models, strategies, programs, and initiatives that focus on the three core values outlined in the new AACTE strategic plan:
- Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
- Quality and impact
- Inquiry and Innovation
On November 14, I had the privilege of moderating the first in a series of webinars produced through a partnership of AACTE and the Educator Preparation Laboratory (EdPrepLab). This webinar, “Social and Emotional Learning, Cultural Competence, and Equity in Teacher Preparation,” will be followed by three others focusing on transformative research and practice in educator preparation.
Joining me for the webinar were Nancy Markowitz of the Center for Reaching and Teaching the Whole Child, Patty Swanson from San Jose State University, Pat Norman from Trinity University, and Mari Jones from the HighTech High Graduate School of Education.
Both Trinity and High Tech High, where Norman and Jones teach, are members of the EdPrepLab network. EdPrepLab, which launched this year, is an initiative of the Learning Policy Institute and the Bank Street College of Education that aims to strengthen educator preparation in the United States by linking research, policy, and practice and by supporting and expanding preparation that is equity-focused, student-centered, and grounded in the science of learning and development.
California State University Monterey Bay (CSUMB) has been selected to receive funding under the U.S. Department of Education’s Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP) program in the amount of $4,849,320; $2.2M of which will go directly to student scholarships.
The award, expected to span over a total of five years, will also help fund a project entitled Preparing Observational Practitioners through Partnerships Yearlong (POPPY) and support CSUMB partnerships with eight school districts across Monterey County, further advancing the “grow your own” model of teacher preparation.
Collaborative. Encouraging. Communicative. Supportive. Empowering. These are characteristics that contemporary educator preparation programs are committed to building within their traditional teacher candidates. For co-teaching teams, however, these traits are more than preferred; they are essential to success.
Co-teaching is an innovative pedagogical model adopted to maximize instructional impact and engagement amongst preservice and in-service teachers. Thanks to the support of the AACTE, the “Co-Teaching in Clinical Practice” Topical Action Group (TAG) is able to advocate for co-teaching and support co-teachers in schools throughout the nation.
This article originally appeared in The Carolinian and is reprinted with permission.
With a new multi-million-dollar grant, UNC-Greensboro’s (UNCG) School of Education will create a new teaching program focused on bringing high-tech thinking to two rural North Carolina counties.
The 5-year, $6.1 million grant comes from the Teacher Quality Partnership grant program under the United States Department of Education.
UNCG School of Education will use the grant money to establish the Piedmont Teacher Residency Partnership. The Partnership will train new teachers in new technology and problem solving, and the teachers will be placed in some public schools in Rockingham and Surry counties.
Our nation and the entire world are changing rapidly. With the rise of threats to our children’s safety like depression, lack of mental health resources, familial disruptions, and school violence and shootings, it is imperative that we equip teachers and school personnel with the tools they need to recognize and respond to all students, in all classrooms.
In today’s schools, students are suffering from a variety of issues; one that arises too often is mental health. Unfortunately, it is not always apparent what these students are experiencing. Depression is rampant. Emotional stress stems from a variety of external factors including depression, divorce, social media anxiety, lost friendships, bullying or simply feeling out of touch with others. It is imperative, now more than ever, that our teachers are prepared to notice when students are experiencing these types of trauma. Trauma informed practices allow teachers to be trained well beyond the obvious clues and prepares them to be aware of early, less apparent warning signs, so they can successfully and swiftly intervene to help a student in need.
This article and photo originally appeared in EdSource and are reprinted with permission.
Jennifer Garza, a 7th grade English teacher at Green Acres Middle School in Visalia, was teaching on an intern credential in 2015.
Two federal grants totaling over $9.4 million will help California recruit teachers and mental health professionals to rural schools.
The U.S. Department of Education awarded the five-year grants to the California Center on Teaching Careers, an organization started in 2016 to help solve the persistent teacher shortage. The center is run by the Tulare County Office of Education, in partnership with California State University Bakersfield.
AACTE President and CEO Lynn Gangone and I had the privilege of demonstrating the Association’s commitment to Inquiry and Innovation during a recent visit to New Orleans.
AACTE collaborated with member institution, the University of Central Florida, to present the TeachLivE™ Lab (TLE Lab) to members of Grantmakers for Education during their recent conference in Louisiana. Grantmakers for Education is the nation’s largest and most diverse network of education grantmakers dedicated to improving educational outcomes and increasing opportunities for all learners.