Public Affairs

California State University and National Academy of Sciences to Host Teacher Preparation Summit

Keynote speakers include Under Secretary of Education Martha Kanter, education policy advisor Linda Darling-Hammond

(February 9, 2011) - Education stakeholders across the country in the field of teacher education are expected to attend the California State University's Summit on Teacher Preparation to be held in collaboration with the National Academy of Sciences on Feb. 14 from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Beckman Center, the Western Headquarters and Conference Center of the National Academies of Science and Engineering at 100 Academy Drive in Irvine. 

The summit will focus on identifying successful strategies for teacher preparation that can be replicated in California and nationally with a special emphasis on equipping new teachers to work with English learners, economically disadvantaged and special needs students.  Evaluating the performance of new teachers and programs will also be a key part of the discussion.

"We have been using data to evaluate and improve teacher education for more than a decade," said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed, "and our systemwide annual evaluation is recognized as a national model that includes graduate and employer data, as well as P-12 student outcomes.  One goal for the summit will be to build upon effective strategies for preparing expert teachers in science and math."

In his recent State of the Union address, President Obama set a goal over the next 10 years of preparing 100,000 new teachers in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.  As the largest preparer of new teachers in the nation, CSU graduates 13,000 new teachers in California each year, and over the past five years has successfully doubled the number of math and science teachers it prepares from 750 to 1,500. 

In addition to plenary session and breakout workshops, keynote speakers at the summit will include Martha Kanter, U.S. Undersecretary of Education; Linda Darling-Hammond, the Charles E. Ducommun Professor of Education at Stanford, and Lee Shulman, president emeritus of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.  For the full agenda, go here.

Summit To Build On National Effort
CSU's teacher summit follows on the recommendations of a national panel, composed of education experts and critics that called for teacher education to be "turned upside down" by revamping programs to place clinical practice at the center of teacher preparation.  The new approach would require the development of partnerships with school districts in which teacher evaluation becomes a shared responsibility between P-12 schools and higher education.

Those and other sweeping recommendations were part of a report by the Blue Ribbon Panel on Clinical Preparation and Partnerships for Improved Student Learning, which included Chancellor Reed and Long Beach Unified Superintendent Chris Steinhauser as members, and was convened by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).  The report called for centering curriculum around class-room ready training and will involve significant policy and procedural changes in both state higher education and P-12 education systems.  Eight states – including California – have already agreed to implement the panel's recommendations.  For the full report, go here.

The summit will also highlight the importance of linking the preparation of teachers with after-school learning programs, and closing persistent achievement gaps.  California has more than 4,000 after-school programs that are offered at the state's highest need elementary and middle schools.  They offer a unique opportunity for early clinical experiences for future teachers who can contribute significantly to closing achievement gaps while in these roles. 

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About the California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 412,000 students year round and 43,000 faculty and staff. Since the system was created in 1961, it has awarded nearly 2.5 million degrees, about 90,000 annually. The CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces. A recent economic report found that the CSU supports more than 150,000 jobs statewide, annually. The engine driving job creation is more than $17 billion in economic activity that directly results from CSU-related spending that generates $5.43 for every dollar the state invests. The mission of the CSU is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California.

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