The Carnegie Corporation of New York has invited four higher education institutions to submit proposals to participate in a $40 million initiative designed to strengthen K-12 education through improved education programs at colleges and universities.
The Teachers for a New Era initiative will stress three main principles: that presidents of colleges and universities promote education schools within the university community; that faculty in the arts and sciences collaborate with faculty in the education department to ensure that prospective teachers receive a solid education in a variety of disciplines; and that teaching should be established as a clinical profession, with students mentored by master teachers in a formal residency program as they transition from college to classroom. The four institutions asked to submit proposals — the Bank Street College of Education in New York City; California State University, Northridge; Michigan State University; and the University of Virginia — have already embraced these beliefs as critical to teacher education.
Schools selected to participate in the initiative will perform research on higher education programs and develop new programs that will challenge and inspire their peers. Each school will receive up to $5 million over five years and will be required to match that investment. Carnegie has committed more than $30 million to the initiative, while the Annenberg Foundation in St. Davids, Pennsylvania, and the New York City-based Ford Foundation have pledged $5 million each.
"Teaching reform is central to school reform, and these institutions are pioneers in the movement," said Carnegie Corporation president Vartan Gregorian. "If we really want to improve student achievement, we have no choice but to improve teaching. As the 19th century French philosopher Victor Cousin succinctly put it, 'As is the teacher, so is the school.'"