U.Va. to develop state-of-the-art
teacher ed program
Grant could bring $5 million to collaborative
initiative between College and Curry School
is one of four universities that the Carnegie Corporation of New
York has invited to participate in a landmark initiative designed
to strengthen K-12 teaching by developing state-of-the-art programs
at schools of education.
other universities asked to submit proposals in this early phase
of the multi-year initiative, called Teachers for a New
Era, are Bank Street College of Education in New York City,
California State University-Northridge and Michigan State University.
reform is central to school reform, and these institutions are
pioneers in the movement, says Vartan Gregorian, president
of the Carnegie Corporation. If we really want to improve
student achievement, we have no choice but to improve teaching.
As the 19th century French philosopher, Victor Cousin, succinctly
put it, As is the teacher, so is the school.
are proud and delighted to have been selected to create
models of excellence for teacher education. The philosophy
behind the program matches precisely our views at U.Va.
The financial support will allow us to make dynamic additions
to an already excellent program, including closer linkages
with Arts & Sciences faculty and greater follow-up of
our graduates as they enter the profession.
Curry School dean
the past few months, faculty members at U.Va.s Curry
School of Education and College
of Arts and Sciences have worked collaboratively on a proposal
that should help the University become a leader in teacher education,
said Gene D. Block, vice president and provost. The Carnegie
project will allow the Curry School and the College to interact
in creative ways by supporting new opportunities for achieving
an integrated educational program.
Gregorians leadership, Carnegie has made higher education
issues, particularly reform of teachers education, one of
its highest priorities. This reform initiative has established
three guiding principles as critical in the redesign of schools
that prepare teachers:
Leadership on the part of the presidents of the chosen colleges
or universities that elevates the role and importance of schools
of education within the university community and a design that
builds on research evidence.
Top-level collaboration between arts and sciences and education
school faculty to ensure that prospective teachers are well-grounded
in specific disciplines and provided a liberal arts education.
Establishing teaching as a clinical profession, with students
mentored by master teachers in a formal two-year residency as
they make a transition from college to classroom.
findings about teacher education programs and students post-graduation
performance will be critical elements in assessing these principles.
The four institutions asked to participate in Teachers for
a New Era already have embraced these ideas as critical
for what it takes to produce excellent teachers for tomorrows
in recent years has pointed to the pivotal role a teacher plays
in the education of young people, says Neil Grabois, vice
president and director for strategic planning and program coordination.
Clearly, it is imperative that this country improve the
way we prepare teachers. There is evidence that the ideas in Teachers
for a New Era can make a difference.
L. Ayers, dean of Arts & Sciences, who continues to teach
at least one class a semester, said he recognizes that becoming
a teacher is hard work. It demands a firm grounding in a
discipline as well as self-awareness about the act of teaching,
he added. This grant will allow us to move collaboration
between Curry and the College to the next level, strengthening
a partnership that helps both schools, that helps the teachers-to-be,
and that helps their future students.
success of the institutions chosen to be part of the initiative,
their graduates and the research produced during the next five
years are expected to challenge and inspire other institutions
to follow these ideas. At the conclusion of this investment,
predicts Daniel Fallon, chair of the Corporations education
division, the participating universities will be seen as
having established the standards for best practice in educating
initiative, which will ultimately include at least eight higher
education institutions by 2004, involves a foundation investment
of up to $5 million that each university will match over a five-year
period. Additional foundation grants will cover evaluations and
up to $750,000 in grants that each university will share with
its local partners, including school districts and other teacher
education programs. Joining the corporations initiative
are the Ford Foundation and The Annenberg Foundation, which each
committed $5 million. The Rockefeller Foundation will be covering
the costs of a major ongoing external evaluation of the initiative.
are proud and delighted to have been selected to create models
of excellence for teacher education. The philosophy behind the
program matches precisely our views at U.Va., said David
W. Breneman, dean of the Curry School. The financial support
will allow us to make dynamic additions to an already excellent
program, including closer linkages with Arts & Sciences faculty
and greater follow-up of our graduates as they enter the profession.