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Breathing Room for Teacher Evaluation; Will ED Extend Approach to Teacher Prep?

Yesterday, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan issued a statement responding to widespread concerns about standardized testing—saying that “testing issues today are sucking the oxygen out of the room in a lot of schools” and offering to delay by a year the federal requirement that teacher evaluations include some “significant” influence from students’ performance on state assessments.

Christopher Edley to Address CAEP Conference

The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.

Last month, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) announced Angela Duckworth as the first keynote speaker for the 2014 Fall CAEP Conference in Washington, DC. We are equally excited to announce that civil rights scholar Christopher Edley will keynote on Day 2 of the conference.

Edley, former dean of the University of California-Berkeley School of Law, is currently faculty director of the Chief Justice Earl Warren Institute on Law and Social Policy, which he cofounded. He also was cofounder of the Civil Rights Project at Harvard University, where he taught law for 23 years.

Angela Duckworth to Speak at CAEP Conference

The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.

The University of Pennsylvania’s Angela Duckworth, whose top-rated Ted Talk  on “grit” has received more than 4.6 million views, will be the keynote speaker at the 2014 Fall CAEP Conference (CAEPCon) Tuesday, September 30. The conference is being held in partnership with AACTE.

Duckworth’s research on non-IQ competencies that predict achievement influenced the development of CAEP Standard 3: Recruitment and Selectivity. The topic of Duckworth’s keynote will be “True Grit.”

New Reports Heighten Attention to Diversity of Teaching Workforce

A new report from the National Education Association (NEA) is the latest in a recent flood of attention to the lack of diversity among the nation’s teaching workforce.

Earlier this week, NEA released Time for a Change: Diversity in Teaching Revisited, which explores the need to recruit and retain teachers of color and the political context that has diminished interest in and initiatives toward meeting the goal. According to Segun Eubanks, director of NEA’s Teacher Quality Department, “This is not a new concern.” The paper examines the progress—or lack of progress—made to address diversity of the teaching workforce and uses the findings as a basis for recommending change.

AACTE Names NIC Participants for ‘Changing the Demographic Makeup of the Teaching Workforce’

AACTE has selected 10 institutions to participate in the Association’s first Networked Improvement Community (NIC), aimed at increasing the diversity of our nation’s teacher candidate pool by focusing on recruitment of more Black and Hispanic men into teacher preparation programs.

More than 50 AACTE member institutions in 25 states applied to be a part of this NIC, known as Changing the Demographic Makeup of the Teaching Workforce. Following a rigorous review by the AACTE Committee on Professional Preparation and Accountabilty, AACTE congratulates the following institutions on their selection:

Collaboration of Professional Community Required to Address Shameful Issue of Hard-to-Staff Schools

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.

New Carnegie Report Examines Effects of Teacher Turnover

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.)

New Videos Showcase edTPA Experiences of Preparation Programs, Candidates

AACTE and the Stanford Center for Assessment, Learning, and Equity (SCALE) are pleased to announce the availability of new video interviews about edTPA, a nationally available teacher performance assessment created to ensure new teachers are effective from Day 1.

The first set of video interviews comes from New York State. As of May 1, 2014, New York State will require teacher candidates to pass edTPA as a requirement for initial certification, and many institutions in that state have been piloting edTPA. For the videos, we set up a roundtable discussion with teacher candidates from some of these institutions to talk about their experiences using the assessment. The video series Candidate to Candidate: Reflections on Taking edTPA shows teacher candidates discussing the challenges of edTPA, sharing advice and major takeaways they learned from the program, and offering many other valuable insights on teaching and teacher preparation. Click here to see for yourself!

RFP Announcement: AACTE State Chapter Support Grant Program

AACTE is pleased to offer the State Chapter Support Grant Program for a 4th year, directing member dues toward strengthening the relationship between the state chapters and AACTE and supporting the development of state chapters through their initiatives. Since the creation of the program, AACTE has dispensed $150,000 in grants to 26 states to support chapters’ advocacy, professional development, and capacity-building efforts.

U.S. House Hearing Scrutinizes Teacher Preparation

On February 27, the U.S. House subcommittee on elementary and secondary education and the subcommittee on higher education held a hearing titled “Exploring Efforts to Strengthen the Teaching Profession.”

Witnesses included Marcy Singer-Gabella, professor of the Practice of Education at Vanderbilt University (TN), along with two officials from state departments of education and the director of an alternative-route program.

AACTE Launches ‘Innovation Exchange’ to Speed Pace of Change in Educator Preparation

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.

AACTE Releases Model Legislation for States

Today, AACTE released model state legislation to recruit high-achieving students into the teaching profession and incentivize them to teach in our neediest schools.

The Teaching Fellows bill is the first released by AACTE in its initiative to develop model state legislation that is aligned with AACTE’s state policy priorities and with the recommendations from “Excellent Teachers for Each and Every Child: A Guide for State Policy,” a joint effort by AACTE and several partner organizations that was released in December 2013. The initiative reflects AACTE’s goal of promoting sound education policies—grounded in research and practice—that will strengthen the teaching profession and will have a positive impact on students.

Preparing Teachers for Practice at AACTE’s Annual Meeting

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.

AACTE Seeks Applications for Initiative to Bring More Men of Color to Teaching

AACTE invites member institutions to apply to join a new initiative, Changing the Demographic Makeup of the Teaching Workforce, which will help 10 institutions increase the number of Black and Hispanic men receiving initial teaching certification through their programs.

The initiative will be AACTE’s first “networked improvement community” (NIC). NICs use the principles of improvement science to analyze a problem and design innovations. They leverage the community of participants to test and refine those interventions in a variety of contexts and to distribute those interventions broadly. AACTE’s NIC will focus on areas for intervention such as recruitment strategies, equity-based admissions policies, incentives to pursue a career in teaching, and others identified by NIC members.

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