By Rebecca Koenig
Graduates of Call Me MISTER: Photo by Patrick Wright, Clemson University, Photographic Services-University Relations.
This article originally appeared in EdSurge and is reprinted with permission.
When Alphonso Richard Jr. walked into his first teacher education course at Clemson University, he experienced a shock.
“Being in a class where you’re the only male, I didn’t know where to sit,” he says. “Girls were looking like, ‘Oh my goodness, is that a guy in here?’”
Compounding the confusion: Most women in the room were white, and Richard is Black. The dissonance was enough to send a shiver of doubt through the aspiring educator’s mind.
“It was a scared, hesitant feeling at first,” Richard says. “Am I meant to be here? Is this for me?”
It takes courage to enter a space where you’re not sure you belong. That’s the kind of threshold that Black men training to become educators have to cross many times. They make up only 2 percent of U.S. public school teachers (men overall compose 24 percent). They’re also underrepresented in college teacher-preparation programs, as education is “one of the least diverse major fields in higher education,” according to a 2019 report from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education.
By Katrina Norfleet
Last month, President Biden called for an unprecedented investment in his FY 22 budget proposal to begin to redress the chronic inequities in our nation’s education system. In a new playbook, the Partnership for the Future of Learning offers a set of high-impact strategies and examples for recruiting, preparing, developing, and retaining high-quality teachers and bringing greater racial, ethnic, and linguistic diversity to the profession.
The 152-page Teaching Profession Playbook was developed by the Learning Policy Institute and the Public Leadership Institute in collaboration with 26 organizations and five individual experts. The digital playbook includes examples of legislation; a curated list of publications, by topic, for further reading; a guide to talking about teacher shortages and strengthening the profession; and examples of research-based policies.
By Amy Carlson Gustafson
This article originally appeared on the University of St. Thomas Newsroom and is reprinted with permission.
The School of Education at St. Thomas is making inroads to increase the number of people of color who choose to become teachers, and national organizations are recognizing its efforts. In March, the school received notice that the Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) accepted its proposal to be part of a consortium to increase equitable access to teaching.
Only around 6% of licensed Minnesota teachers identified as Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC), while 38% of students in the state are nonwhite, according to state data. In efforts to help close that gap, the School of Education will join with other AACTE members to examine entrance requirements for teacher preparation programs. This collaboration exemplifies just one more way in which the school has been working to grow the number of diverse teachers through a variety of programs, including key partnerships.
By Maria Salciccioli and Gretchen Mills
Prepared to Teach and WestEd have partnered on the Sustainability Project, a series of reports and interactive tools to support high-quality, financially sustainable teacher preparation. Three reports are being released this week through that project. Two are co-authored by Prepared to Teach and WestEd—Beyond Tuition, Costs of Teacher Preparation, and Going Further Together: Building Ownership and Engagement to Support High-Quality Teacher Preparation. The co-authored papers are being released simultaneously with a third piece authored by Prepared to Teach – Dollars and Sense: Federal Investments in Our Educator Workforce.
AACTE members know that aspiring teachers need high-quality, affordable options for teacher preparation—and research has shown that when candidates from diverse backgrounds have access to excellent programs, everyone benefits. Graduates of these programs stay in the classroom for longer and are more well-prepared than their peers who become teachers through faster, less rigorous pathways to the classroom.
By Ward Cummings
The Ohio Deans Compact on Exceptional Children has a mission to act collectively in support of improved learning and results for all children, but especially those from marginalized groups. Compact serves as a forum for shared learning and collective action. Due to its efforts, critical connections have been made within and outside the state through representation from key stakeholder groups, including the members of Ohio Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and AACTE.
The 30-member organization meets quarterly and is comprised of leaders from the Ohio Department of Education and the Ohio Department of Higher Education (ODHE). Compact members participate on one of four standing committees (Dissemination, Impact Evaluation, Low Incidence, Policy). Institutions that are awarded incentive grants through the Compact participate in a facilitated community of practice (CoP), which serves as a peer-to-peer network for representatives from public and private institutions.
By Weade James
AACTE is pleased to announce the selected states for the Consortium for Research-Based and Equitable Assessments (CREA), a new initiative supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Consortium, comprised of 14 state teams that include educator preparation programs (EPPs) and their state and local education agencies, will evaluate cut scores for entrance into EPPs, and develop recommendations and model state policies to support state efforts to advance equity and recruit more diverse teacher candidates into the profession.
The 14 selected states and institutions include the following:
By Jerrica Thurman
The Tennessee Department of Education is offering Grow Your Own grants to educator preparation programs (EPPs) who work with the state’s school districts. The $2 million grants are available to help remove barriers and increase access to the education field for prospective teachers in Tennessee. The May 7 application deadline is quickly approaching! Application requirements and additional information are available here.
The Grown Your Own initiative supports partnerships between EPPs and Local Education Agencies (LEAs) to provide innovative, no-cost pathways to the teaching profession by increasing EPP enrollment and growing the supply of qualified teachers to serve the state’s diverse student population. It provides no-cost access to a pathway to teaching to meet the need for increased diversity as well as to address the state’s teacher shortage. The second round of grants will provide 20 EPPs with $100,000 for their programs.
By Colleen Beaudoin
The University of Tampa (UT) announced a partnership last month with Pasco County Schools that will provide Pasco educators interested in taking leadership roles a path to pursue either a certification in educational leadership or a master’s degree in educational leadership.
According to the agreement, the partnership is intended to “increase the supply of effective school leaders in public schools in Florida, and to produce school leaders who are prepared to lead the state’s diverse student population in meeting high standards for academic achievement.”
By David Fuentes and Amy Ginsberg
In the following article, David A. Fuentes and Amy Ginsberg of the College of Education at William Paterson, a member of AACTE’s Network Improvement Community (NIC) Black and Hispanic/Latino Male Teacher Initiative, take a deep dive into their efforts to increase dual enrollment opportunities as a preemptive recruitment strategy. They provide insight into how network improvement science can be used to identify levers within education preparation program systems that can improve recruitment and retention of diverse teacher candidates.
To learn more about NIC members’ initiatives to recruit and retain Black and Latina males, watch the Building Recruitment Pathways, a segment of AACTE’s new NIC video case studies series.
Building and Sustaining Recruitment Pathways for Black and Latino Male Teachers
In 2014, our College of Education at William Paterson University, a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and Minority Serving Institution (MSI), located in the greater New York City area, was selected as one of ten universities to participate in the AACTE Network Improvement Community (NIC), aimed at increasing the number of Black and Latino/Hispanic male teachers (BLMs). Since that time, we have been engaged in iterative cycles of plan-do-study-act (PDSA). This systematic research first led to our becoming NIC mindful and then to several structural changes in our College of Education that make our efforts aimed at teacher diversification more possible today in both theory and practice. We have uncovered, implemented, and tested the efficacy of several structural changes at our institution targeting key drivers, recruitment and retention, while implementing new structures based on network improvement science and our desire and commitment to diversify our teacher candidate pool.
By Amanda Morales
Join the AACTE Diversified Teacher Workforce Topical Action Group (TAG) Learning Lab on Building Culturally Efficacious University-School Partnerships on Tuesday April 2O, 1:00 -2:30 p.m. (CST) via the Zoom: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/8406529033
Across the field of education (PK-20) students, teachers, administrators, professors, and program leaders continue to witness and lament the chronic disparities in representation and lack of ethno-racial and linguistic diversity among teachers (relative to their students) in our nation’s schools. And in the wake of a global pandemic, enduring civil unrest, and calls for racial justice related to systemic anti-Blackness and anti-immigrant within all aspects of society, educational institutions are being forced to engage in introspection with greater magnitude. Teacher preparation programs in particular are feeling increased pressure to recruit, retain, and effectively prepare a highly-qualified, racially-literate, diverse pool of candidates as districts scramble to hire teachers with the content knowledge and pedagogical skills as well as the cultural and linguistic competencies needed to meet the needs of their increasingly diverse student populations.
By Nicole Dunn
With the exacerbation of our nation’s teacher shortage brought on by the pandemic, the new White House administration will need to address this crisis strategically, keeping equity top of mind. As AACTE looks forward to improving the capacity and representation in the teacher workforce, it is essential for policy makers to tie decisions back to the historical context of structural oppression that has created barriers for a diverse teacher workforce in the past. As part of the AACTE Network Improvement Community (NIC) Black and Hispanic/Latino Male Teacher Initiative, NIC members identified a number of barriers and solutions to these obstacles, which are highlighted in Reducing Barriers, a segment of AACTE’s new NIC video case studies series.
The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) released today its new video series featuring promising practices for recruiting and retaining male teachers of color. AACTE created the Black and Hispanic/Latino Male Teacher Initiative Networked Improvement Community (NIC), which included a 5-year study by 10 AACTE member institutions that implemented improvement science to address the shortage crisis of Black and Hispanic/Latino profession-ready male teachers. Key findings from their research are featured in the video case studies, where the NIC participants present their experiences and lessons learned. NIC members describe effective ways for reducing barriers, developing partnerships, building recruitment pathways, providing mentorship, and offering faculty training to diversify the profession.
By Candace Johnson and Michael Douglas
Houston Endowment has awarded Prairie View A&M University’s Whitlowe R. Green College of Education (WRGCOE) one of the college’s largest grants in its 141-year history. The foundation is investing $1.5 million in the College to support PVAMU’s Educator Preparation Program, increasing the number of qualified teachers of color and preparing the educators for long-term success. The grant is part of $20M in funds the Houston Endowment awarded to several Houston area organizations committed to making racial equity and social justice in Houston a reality.
By E. Wyatt Gordon
Learner-centered design (LCD) has become a key component of digital products and platforms; curriculum and lesson planning; and non-didactic pedagogical approaches. This paradigm foregrounds the needs of learners by meeting learners where they are. LCD proposes that all designed environments should be built around the goals, needs, activities and educational contexts of users. In essence, LCDs allow for the incorporation of the whole learner by using their preferences, strengths, weaknesses, and interests as assets that can be leveraged to strengthen learning experiences.
By Weade James
AACTE recognizes the challenges that many of our members are facing because of the recent winter storms. We believe that your safety and well-being are most important. As such, we are extending the application deadline for the Consortium for Research-Based and Equitable Assessments (CREA). The new deadline to apply is March 5 at 11:59 p.m. EST.
We appreciate the overwhelming interest that have been expressed to join the Consortium and hope that this extension will provide much needed respite to those impacted by widespread power and utility outages, and other challenges to their everyday needs. Given the new deadline, all applicants will be notified of their application decision on March 22, 2021.
Please direct any questions about the Call for Applications to me at email@example.com.