John R. Lewis, Associate Dean for External Relations, Office of Field Placement and Recruitment in Hofstra University’s School of Education, has been awarded a $27,712 grant from the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities for the “NYSED Higher Education Faculty Development Project.”
“The Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities provided a competitive pool of grant funding for member institutions targeting the changing requirements for teacher certification and the development of a more diverse pool of teachers for the public schools,” Dean Lewis said.
This grant is a reimbursement for work done during the 2014-15 academic year. The goals of the project were twofold. Faculty members worked to retool approximately a dozen School of Education (SOE) courses across all teacher certification areas to include new competencies required of all new teachers seeking initial teacher certification. Additionally, the School of Education developed recruitment practices that targeted a more diverse student population seeking teacher licensure through SOE programs.
“As requirements for teacher certification have changed over the past five years, the School of Education has aggressively sought to retool many of its curricular offerings in response to these changes,” Dean Lewis said. “Half of this grant funding underwrote faculty efforts to adapt core courses to these changes. Our students are currently receiving embedded instruction in these areas as a direct result of this important work. SOE students are better prepared for the required certification exams.”
As for recruitment, the SOE systematically reached out to underrepresented geographic areas in the New York metropolitan area and beyond. The school tapped into professional organizations, conferences and publications to reach potentially diverse students.
“One of our goals, as a School of Education, is to develop a more diverse teacher workforce that can better represent the demographic realities of our region,” Dean Lewis said.