College of Education launches pilot Early Childhood Education program

AUGUSTA, GA. – Georgia Regents University is leading the redesign of educator preparation programs with an innovative new pilot program for teachers in training.

The College of Education, with the support of a grant from the Georgia Network for Transforming Educator Preparation, has forged partnerships with local schools in order to smoothly transition GRU education students into teaching.

“Educator preparation is changing dramatically throughout the state and the nation. This pilot program is designed to integrate field experience and academic coursework before student teaching,” said Dr. Paula Dohoney, Associate Dean of the GRU College of Education.

Georgia is one of seven states selected to participate in a two-year pilot focused on transforming educator preparation and entry systems to the profession. The initiative — led by the Council of Chief State School Officers, or CCSSO, and formally called the Network for Transforming Educator Preparation, or NTEP — grew out of a “call to action” that CCSSO issued late last year and adds to the growing momentum to make university-based teacher preparation programs more accountable for student achievement.

The pilot program will begin in the Richmond County Schools, with the intention of expanding to other schools and districts in the future.

“This also allows university faculty to bring the latest research in best practices into the schools and to share that information more readily with classroom teachers, while working alongside them to implement those best practices,” Dohoney said.

College faculty and P-12 school faculty will work with co-teaching settings, provide professional development and directly supervise teacher candidates as they learn to implement pedagogical strategies.

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