AACTE Launches National Clinical Practice Commission

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Higher education, K-12 leaders to jointly define high-quality clinical teacher preparation

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The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) has brought together a group of higher education and K-12 leaders from across the country to examine the state of clinical practice in teacher preparation. The Clinical Practice Commission (CPC) is charged with identifying a set of criteria that define clinical practice, lifting up exemplary models in the field and ultimately publishing a set of recommendations for teacher preparation programs nationwide.

“In 2010, the NCATE Blue Ribbon Panel on Clinical Preparation and Partnerships found that clinical preparation was a key lever to high quality teacher preparation,” said Rodrick Lucero, AACTE’s Vice President for Member Engagement and Support, who chairs the CPC. “Although we know how essential classroom experiences are to a candidate’s preparation, we also see a broad spectrum of practices being labelled ‘clinical.’ It is high time to create a shared and actionable definition of what high-quality clinical practice looks like to be able to continually improve individual programs and the field as a whole.”

The CPC, which includes representation from professional associations, institutions of higher education and K-12 school districts, will work over the next six months to develop a common understanding of effective approaches to field experiences. The group will develop a white paper, to be circulated broadly this fall for input from the field, and will also recommend ways to address common roadblocks to building successful district-university partnerships, such as transportation, funding and scheduling concerns.

“There are so many promising, and yet disparate, approaches to candidate preparation around the country,” said Jennifer Roth, assistant principal of Fort Collins (Colo.) High School, who is a member of the CPC. “This work is essential to ensuring that we continue to build a professional community that better serves all students through a continuum of practice from pre-K to higher education.”

Current members of the CPC include educators involved in AACTE, the Association of Teacher Educators, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, the National Association of Professional Development Schools, the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, the National Network for Educational Renewal, and K-12 schools:

Rodrick Lucero, American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (Chair)
Michael Alfano, Central Connecticut State University
Nancy Dana, University of Florida
Derek Decker, Poudre School District (Colo.)
Christine DeGregory, George Mason University
Danielle Dennis, University of South Florida                                
Elaine Holmes, Poudre School District
Marcy Keifer Kennedy, Ohio University
Amanda Lester, State University of New York
Audra Parker, George Mason University        
Jennifer Robinson, Montclair State University
Rene Roselle, University of Connecticut
Jennifer Roth, Poudre School District (Colo.)
Lisa Stooksberry, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards
Cindy Stunkard, Kutztown University
Diane Yendol-Hoppey, University of South Florida
Kristien Zenkov, George Mason University
Omar Davis and Tim Finklea, AACTE support staff

For more information, visit http://www.aacte.org.

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AACTE: The Leading Voice on Educator Preparation
The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education is a national alliance of educator preparation programs dedicated to high-quality, evidence-based preparation that assures educators are ready to teach all learners on Day 1. Its over 800 member institutions represent public and private colleges and universities in every state, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and Guam. AACTE leads the field in advocacy and capacity building by promoting innovation and effective practices as critical to reforming educator preparation. For more information, visit http://www.aacte.org.

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