June 10, 2020
Correction: The previous edition of NCTR's Eblast included the incorrect picture for SUTR Resident of the Year nominee Sharifa Sheyba.  The correct picture is included below.  

NCTR and Partner News

Congratulations to Alder Graduate School of Education on their accreditation!  Heather Kirkpatrick, Alder GSE’s President, said, “The [California Commission on Teacher Credentialing] Commission on Accreditation just approved Alder to award K-5 Multiple Subject and 6-12 Single Subject credentials in the state of California.  While each hurdle we have leapt over the past five years has been significant, none have been as sweet as this final one that launches us as an entirely independent Graduate School of Education.”

Three Chesterfield County (VA) Teachers of the Year—including middle school teacher Katie Moore, a former Richmond Teacher Residency mentor and coach—were surprised by school officials with recognition at home, reports
The Chesterfield Observer.

Program Spotlight: Featuring this Year's Residents and Mentors

Saint Paul Public Schools Urban Teacher Residency (SUTR) program aims to recruit, prepare and retain highly qualified teachers who share similar life experiences as our diverse student population in SPPS.  SUTR provides an affordable, accelerated program to earn a Minnesota teaching license and master’s degree in 15 months from the University of St. Thomas.
Mentor of the Year Nominee

Elementary Special Education teacher Martin Odima has been a mentor teacher for SUTR since the beginning of the program, often leaned on to drive the teacher residency work.  In his four years of mentoring he has demonstrated a commitment to resident growth and learning, which is why all of his residents have been hired by St. Paul Public Schools and are excelling in their teaching practice.

 In addition to mentoring, Martin is an adjunct instructor for University of St. Thomas, promoting a practice of inquiry and reflection while being a champion for cultural competence in all that he does.  Martin is fabulous to work with and a model mentor for the program.  Read UST’s February feature on the SUTR, specifically highlighting Martin’s path as a teacher of color.
Resident of the Year Nominee

Sharifa Sheyba is a SUTR resident who continues to show a commitment to student growth and learning every day, prioritizing students’ learning over everything.  In addition to writing lesson plans, implementing small and large group instruction and maintaining all Due Process expectations, Sharifa also maintains superb grades in her coursework, all while serving as a single mother.  She is always the first resident to offer a helping hand to her colleagues when in need and does so with a smile on her face.  Given an opportunity to pursue additional learnings or lead a group, Sharifa is the first person to volunteer and then joins in the work with 100% engagement.  Aside from being an outstanding resident and student, she is also an absolute pleasure to be around as a genuinely nice person.  
Featured News

Police Presence in Schools  

Public sentiment about policing and the power of law enforcement at the community level has become increasingly visible as a rallying cry of protesters across the country calling for social justice. Many activists and advocates are calling for defunding the police—reallocating “law and order” resources in municipal budgets away from police departments and toward social programs that would work at the root causes of violence, crime and implicit bias.  Accompanying this focus is an examination of the effects of law enforcement in education systems.  Several resources were released this week examining the appropriateness and effectiveness of school resource officers, or armed personnel, on campuses.

Summary Articles
News of Community Action
Additional Background

Review resources including research on the criminalization of students and model school policies/reforms from Dignity in Schools’ Counselors Not Cops initiative.

Asserting that it’s a lack of mental health staff in schools, not an absence of law enforcement, that plagues student populations, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) compares data for the recommended rates of school counselors to students (all but two states fall way short in the latest U.S. Department of Education Civil Rights Data Collection).  Also illuminated are disproportionate rates of SRO response to black and brown young people in schools, as compared to punitive action for white students.
Resources & Connections

Educators for Excellence released Voices from the (Virtual) Classroom, a nationally representative survey of public school teachers exploring education during this crisis—what is working, what isn’t, what is needed now—and what teachers think the priorities should be when we return to the classroom. Several findings among the 600-teacher sample size include that educators have had to “radically transform how they teach overnight, often without the needed resources and support” and that “Students from vulnerable populations are disproportionately impacted.” View and download the entire report here.

Meanwhile, a Reuters survey of nearly 60 school districts across the country provides hard evidence confirming parents’ fears: Distance learning is no substitute for in-class teaching, with students missing classes, meals and hands-on instruction. Read the full COVID’s School Daze report and commentary.

The New Teacher Center Community Resources & Support series is a short podcast released weekly featuring education leaders across the country discussing“how they’re supporting academic and social-emotional learning, what’s keeping them up at night, and what is inspiring them to keep on working.” Recent episodes feature school systems in Ft. Worth, TX and Dayton, OH. Listen online or wherever you subscribe to your podcasts.
In The News
Critics decry remote learning in Chicago Public Schools as unfair, say it ‘rewards those with privilege’
Chicago Tribune

The Tribune reports that, while Chicago Public Schools maintains the spring semester rules have been equitable, a “growing contingent of student activists and teachers say [remote learning] has torn up the playing field for already disadvantaged students, in part because those who complete work on paper but not online are ineligible for letter grades.” 

Pandemic May (Finally) Push Online Education into Teacher Prep Programs

With multiple modes of instructional practice taught to aspiring educators, many preparation programs don’t have explicit remote learning curriculum.  “Even teacher prep programs that are offered via online courses don’t necessarily instruct teacher candidates how to educate students remotely,” says AACTE president and CEO Lynn Gangone.  This article covers barriers to adoption and potential innovations to prepare future educators in this crucial time. 
Four in 10 CPS students take part in online learning 2 days a week or fewer
Chicago Sun Times

Research conducted the week of May 11 among 294,000 students in Chicago Public Schools revealed that fewer than 60% of students are engaging with online remote learning 3+ days per week. Students of color, who make up more than 80% of all CPS enrollees, were shown to be less engaged than their White and Asian peers, with contributing factors such as more parents working essential roles and unable to be home to assist with schoolwork.
School districts struggle to help English language learners during COVID-19 crisis

Federal guidance was issued in mid-May for schools to ensure ELLs continue learning throughout the pandemic. However, many schools have already wrapped up for the year. A spotlight on suburban Denver’s Adams 14 district shows that “[English language] instruction varies widely, depending on state law and district policies, and advocates say it was hard to enforce the civil rights of English learners even before the coronavirus.” 
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Please note that the articles and events in the NCTR E-Blast do not reflect the opinions of our organization, but rather represent information that we believe will be relevant to you and your programs.

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1332 North Halsted Street  |  Suite 304  |  Chicago, IL 60642 
Phone: 312-397-8878  |  Fax: 312-397-1418