BREAKOUT SESSION IV
The full conference program (complete with Zoom links) can be downloaded from the home page.
Facilitator: Sylvester Solorio
College of Education Deans - Surviving and Thriving in a Pandemic!
Moderator: Shonda Gibson
Panel: Joyce Alexander, Juan Araujo, Sara Lawrence, James O'Meara, & Carl Sheperis
The leadership for the educator preparation programs across The Texas A&M University System is committed to the development and implementation of outstanding teacher preparation programs that promote the achievement of all Texas students. These Education College leaders have collaborated together as a Community of Practice and focused on three core areas of high quality: 1. Research and Data-Informed Foundation, 2. Creating and Maintaining High-Quality Internal and External Partnerships, and 3. Expanded Communication via We Teach Texas. In this session, we will hear from a panel of leaders who share how the EPPs are surviving and THRIVING through COVID-19.
Facilitator: Shelbee Nguyen
Developing an Effective Conferencing Plan to Use with Preservice Teachers When Writing Commentary
Laura Isbell & April Sanders
This interactive session will describe, model, and guide participants to use specific resources to guide preservice teachers with the creation of edTPA© portfolios. Specifically, the presenters will detail their process of developing a plan for conferencing with preservice teachers while they are in the drafting stage of writing commentary for their portfolios. The conferencing plan is a way to support preservice teachers in the reflection process related to the portfolio. The presenters will provide the conferencing guide and plan they developed as well as discuss the process of developing that plan along with the development of guiding questions.
Facilitator: Sara Gibson
Engaging Partners and PK12 Stakeholders in Accreditation and Improvement Processes
Linda McKee, Casey Graham Brown, & Dana Kennamar
In this session, presenters will discuss ways to partner with educator preparation provider’s advisory committees in national accreditation processes. Presenters will share how PK12 partnerships can help disclose and improve provider weaknesses and illuminate strengths and discuss how PK12 partners can support the accreditation process. Participants will have the opportunity to hear the lessons learned from these collaborative partnerships and their progress toward addressing state and local needs. Participants will engage in dialogue regarding the impact of national accreditation along with state and local policies regarding clinical placements and regarding evaluation practices on the development, maintenance, and effectiveness of partnerships.
Facilitator: Ranchel Alvarado
Strand: Program Support
Get Me to the Test on Time
Lara Cavin, PJ Winters, & Karen Gentsch
This session focuses on strategies employed by one small university in developing and designing a cohesive sequence of courses and testing for preservice candidates to take and pass various TExES exams. Our groundwork for PPR, EC-6, STR, and content areas exams will be explained in detail. We will discuss our testing sequences, interventions, and other topics associated with preparing our students to take the TExES before clinical teaching.
Facilitator: Natalie Weisbach
Strand: Program Support
Partnering for Experiential Learning
C. Kelly Cordray
In this session I will explain the process of organizing a partnership with a district to provide pre-service teachers hands on classroom experience early on in their university coursework. This experience connected them to a mentor, allowed them to view small group instruction and differentiation as well as classroom management while also connecting what we were learning in class about the science of teaching reading to the Response to Intervention process.
Facilitator: Caleb Peters
Strand: Program Support
Preparing for edTPA: Lessons Learned During Year One of a Pilot Study
Robin D. Johnson, Tina Ybarra, & Corinne Valadez
This session will focus on lessons learned during the initial implementation of an edTPA pilot study in Texas. The presenters will share information gained from all stakeholders involved: candidates, cooperating teachers, administrators, and faculty.
Facilitator: LaMoya Burks
Strand: Program Support
Utilizing Simulated Learning Environments in Teacher Preparation Programs
Ed Steffek & Maria Peterson-Ahmad
Teacher preparation programs are tasked with preparing teacher candidates prepare to become effective teachers through coursework and field experiences. Embedding simulated learning environments into a preparation program can provide teacher candidates opportunities to transfer knowledge learned from college coursework and apply it, thereby deepening their understanding of skills (Peterson-Ahmad, 2018). These experiences can create early opportunities to construct and solidify evidence-based practices that are grounded in authentic and constructive teaching experiences. This presentation will discuss the utility of two simulated learning environments that can enhance teacher candidate development (TeachLivE and Mursion).
Facilitator: Kayla Corpus
Strand: Implications of COVID-19
Socially Distant Instructional Coaching
Nick Gesualdi, Rachel Moquin, & Matt Campbell
While the literature on coaching, mentoring, and leadership is well-developed, nearly all of this work revolves around a pre-COVID-19 reality that may not exist anymore. The pandemic has caused worldwide upheaval, and opportunities for close, in-person contact that much of this literature is based on is now, and likely will be going forward, very limited. This presentation will focus on how instructional leaders and coaches can leverage coaching in a way that better fits the needs of novice teachers in the midst of the uncertainty that the pandemic has wrought. Both short and long term strategies will be shared with participants.
Facilitator: Kathryn Fazi
Strengthening Partnerships by Assisting Educators with New Challenges
Erin Pearce, Melissa Becker, Anna Fox, Amber Lynn Diaz, Lisa Colvin, Julie Howell, & Robin Pate
Effective Schools Project (ESP) is a university- school partnership program formed in 1988 to improve school effectiveness, increase student achievement, and enhance professional development for pre-service and in-service teachers. ESP produces a peer-reviewed annual journal that highlights best practices in K-12 and higher education. Given recent events, research-based practices for K-12 education are constantly evolving and requiring quick response and problem-solving. This session will highlight how one university met school districts’ needs and strengthened partnerships during a pandemic by creating a special journal issue, online workshops regarding virtually learning, and online professional development.
Facilitator: John Fredrickson
Strand: Implications of COVID
Teaching Amid the Chaos: Lessons Learned from the COVID-19 Pandemic
Jean Kiekel, Serena Flores, & Nicole McZeal Walters
K-12 schools across the nation were thrust into the world of online education as emergency online teaching was forced upon teachers and students. The pandemic forced educators to employ instructional strategies that relied heavily on technology. This presentation details some of the frustrations that K-12 teachers dealt with and looks to potential solutions that educator preparation programs can provide to ensure that teachers will be able to adequately respond to future calls for providing online teaching at the K-12 level.
Facilitator: Jeremiah Porter
Texas Lesson Study as Action Research
Texas Lesson Study is a professional learning opportunity in which educators collaboratively undergo an action research process to discover and implement high-impact instructional practices that lead to student mastery, all while deepening their content knowledge and practice. Teams of Lesson Study teachers identify, research, and apply their learning to design and improve instruction. Beth Burkhart will discuss and answer questions about how Texas Lesson Study is being used as collaborative, teacher-driven action research across the state.
Facilitator: Colin Trudell
Strand: Program Support
The Relationship Between Certification, Employment and Educator Preparation Program
Sherri Lowrey, Christopher Burnett, Chaunte White, & Catherine Horn
There are numerous educator preparation pathway choices to obtain teacher certification in Texas. Besides standard programs, universities, both independent and public, have developed post-baccalaureate, alternative and ACP programs. There are also for-profit ACPs, and educational non-profit ACP programs provided by education service centers, school districts, and community colleges. Over the last two decades, the Texas legislature has made extensive changes to educator preparation and certification, but the various certificate types have remained fairly consistent. This presentation will present initial certification data disaggregated by the EPP types listed above as well as explore the relationship between employment, certification type, and preparation route.
Facilitator: Bekah Guess
Strand: Program Support
The We Teach Texas P12 Mentoring and Coaching Academy: Building Mentoring Capacity, Professionalizing the Mentor’s Role, and Strengthening School-University Partnerships
Valerie Hill-Jackson, Erin Singer, & Matthew Etchells
The We Teach Texas P12 Mentoring and Coaching Academy’s vision, a new program offered by the College of Education and Human Development at Texas A&M University, is to transform the preparation of teacher mentors by providing evidence-based professional development for P12 mentors and coaches who support beginning teachers throughout the state. In a 45-minute presentation, attendees will (1) understand why building mentoring capacity matters, (2) discuss ways that training programs professionalize the mentor’s role, and (3) examine the ways the Academy’s university-based mentor training program, which is aligned to the Texas Teachers Evaluation and Support System (TTESS) rubric, can strengthen school-university partnerships.
Facilitator: Nathan Graham
Transitioning to the Dean Position During a Pandemic: Reflections from Five Texas Deans
Moderator: Frank Hernandez
Panel: Sarah Hartman, Lisa Hobson, Jeff Kirk, & Kimberly McLeod
This proposal is focused on hearing from Texas deans of education who transitioned into the deanship during the COVID19 pandemic. The five deans in this session will each focus on their experiences with onboarding to the dean position and also focus on five distinct areas of dean leadership and how COVID19 has impacted these areas of practice.
Facilitator: Meredith Sutton
Collective Impact: University and School District Partners Re-Envisioning Curriculum Design
Dedra Collins, Tami Jenkins, Kathy Dixon, Wes Corzine
There is a critical need to ensure teacher candidates have high-quality preparation experiences and PK-12 students have access to equitable educational opportunities. The US PREP Coalition, which consists of twenty-one university teacher preparation programs and their school district partners, has committed to cohering around three common instructional approaches: identification of high leverage content and practices, teacher educator pedagogies, and aligned teacher candidate support. Participating university and school district based teacher educators engage in content-specific communities of practice that are driven to redesign coursework that includes standards, evaluation competencies, Pk-12 curriculum, rehearsal, and application of skills in a classroom. The community of practice also serves as a supportive structure that fosters teacher educator reflective practice and thought partnering to develop instruction that meets the needs of teacher candidates and prepares them to educate students in historically underserved communities.