During the 44th Annual North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCCTM) Conference held in Greensboro, NC on 30-31 October 2014, Dr. Ron Preston was presented the W. W. Rankin Memorial Award for Excellence in Mathematics Education, the highest honor that NCCTM can bestow upon a member.
According to the Chair of the W. W. Rankin Award Committee, Dr. Lee V. Stiff, “Dr. Preston is universally regarded as an excellent mathematics teacher, a scholar of mathematics education, and as a person whose service to NCCTM and the teachers of NC is exemplary.”
Dr. Ron Preston has enhanced the quality of mathematics education in North Carolina through his service at East Carolina University in the Department of Math, Science, and Technology through his teaching, his advising and his role as Director of Students. Through his involvement in the greater community, he has been instrumental in the success of such programs as: the North Carolina Project in Improving Mathematics, the Noyce Scholars Program, and the North Carolina Middle Math Project.
Dr. Preston has provided leadership to the North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCCTM) having served as: the Program Chair of two Annual Conferences, a member of the Board of Directors and the Executive Board, and a Regional President. Currently, Ron is the newly-elected President of NCCTM He assumed his position as president-elect on 1 May and will serve in that position for a year, becoming president for a two-year term on 1 May 2015.
On Wednesday, October 22, 2014, the Gamma Student Chapter of NCCTM hosted a 12 person panel consisting of principals, math department chairs/lead grade level math teachers, and a director of human resources. These “insiders” represented elementary, middle, and high school mathematics and shared their knowledge from a combined 185 years of educational expertise. The full panel was introduced to an audience that consisted of approximately 50 students and six Mathematics Education faculty members before breaking into smaller subgroups for elementary, middle, and high school. The conversations within the smaller groups provided the opportunity for panel members to share unique insight for their given educational context, and for Gamma students to ask important questions about not only the hiring process, but also how to become the best math teacher possible. One main theme heard from panel members in each subgroup was that they are looking for, “good math teachers that want to be great math teachers” and that there are supports in place to help them achieve greatness in the math classroom.
Our sincere thanks goes out to the “insider” panel, consisting of the following individuals:
Chena Cayton – Principal, Wahl-Coates Elem School, Pitt County
Karin Stefko – Kindergarten Teacher, Wahl-Coates Elem School, Pitt County
Coni Clark – Third Grade Teacher, Wahl-Coates Elem School, Pitt County
Charlie Langley – Principal, CM Eppes Middle School, Pitt County
Barskdale Thompson – Sixth Grade Teacher, CM Eppes Middle School, Pitt County
Kristen Coleman – Sixth Grade Teacher, CM Eppes Middle School, Pitt County
Thomas Sisson – Seventh Grade Teacher, CM Eppes Middle School, Pitt County
Jerry Simmons – Principal , New Bern High School, Craven County
Brad Johnston – Principal , Farmville Central High School, Pitt County
Renea Baker – Dept Chair , DH Conley High School, Pitt County
Tina Petty – Dept Chair, Southside High School, Beaufort County
Delilah Jackson – Director of Human Resources, Pitt County Schools
The COE Research Committee invites graduate students conducting research to share their work in a roundtable discussion Thursday, November 20, 2014, from 4:00-6:00 PM. All presentations will be held in the Speight Building, and you may present face-to-face or virtually. Submit your research information using the Roundtable Application. Graduate students must be current students in a College of Education program to apply. Contact Dr. Anne Ticknor at email@example.com with questions.
Starfish is an early-alert retention tool that works through Blackboard to support student academic success at ECU. Through Starfish, faculty can inform students of their academic performance within a course and connect students to appropriate support resources.
Starfish’s goal is to catch students before it’s too late and offer academic assistance
Starfish has the capabilities to engage students on many levels, but has been used at East Carolina University extensively to allow faculty to express concerns (flags) or offer words of praise (kudos). Some commonly used flags at East Carolina University have been low test/quiz scores, excessive absences, and stopped attending. Some commonly used kudos have been to keep up the good work, off to a good start, and outstanding academic performance.
In the 2013 – 2014 calendar year alone, College of Education faculty gave out nearly 18600 flags and kudos that without a doubt have proved to be very helpful to students. Faculty feedback is extremely important in helping students reach their academic potential and Starfish provides this in a simple, quick form. A specific flag indicates to the student the nature of the problem and this provides them with the opportunity to correct it. Since faculty have taken the time to address a problem, they are obviously more than happy to support a student through correcting the problem. A specific kudo indicates to the student that things are going well and should be motivation to keep things moving in that direction. I have received 2 kudos this semester so far and am motivated to receive more as I continue my graduate studies. Starfish data shows that the number of flags and kudos given by faculty continues to increase from year to year. Therefore, Starfish appears to be here to stay as it proves to be a very helpful tool for faculty and students alike.
MSA Principal Fellow
East Carolina University
What is Cornerstone? It is the software that East Carolina University uses to offer training opportunities for full-time employees. Faculty and staff can now log into Cornerstone to find instructor-led training, online training, or complete assigned online training. Within Cornerstone, employee’s personalized training center provides links to the areas they will use the most: My Training, Your Upcoming Sessions, Online Training in Progress and Browse for Training.
Training is offered from across the campus from various departments, including the College of Education’s educational technology staff. Employees can search the site for training that fits their interests or needs.
Key Features Within Your Personalized Training Center:
Complete Assigned Online Training: Access the “Online Training in Progress” area and click Launch to access any courses assigned to you.
Register for Instructor-Led Training (ILT): Visit the “Browse for Training” area and click the name of the department or school to view and/or register for upcoming training sessions. Open or print these step-by-step registration instructions. After registration, you will receive an auto-generated email confirmation from firstname.lastname@example.org, complete with an Outlook calendar invite.
Access Your Transcript: Visit the “My Training” area and follow the “Click Here for Transcript” link to view your active, upcoming and completed training.
On October 15, 2014, the Office of Professional Development and Student Outreach in the College of Education collaborated with the Office of Equity and Diversity and the Ledonia Wright Cultural Center to offer a Dynamic Dialogue about Diversity event entitled “Diversity in Education.”
This event featured a roundtable discussion between the 2014 North Carolina Teacher of the Year, James Ford, and two local educators, Juan Castillo from Greene County Schools and Joey Crutchfield from Pitt County Schools. The discussion integrated the topic of assessment of diversity within the teaching profession. The distinguished panelists shared the African American, Latino American, and Native American perspectives as well as their thoughts on the lack of representation of male educators from these subgroups in the classroom.
The panelist and participants engaged in dialogue about the challenges facing higher education in meeting the need for focused recruitment and retention in teacher education programs of underrepresented populations. The impact of the presence of these subgroups in the classroom as teachers as well as the support found in the schools and school systems that encourage retention in the profession was also intertwined into the conversation. Additionally, current students and faculty shared how East Carolina University is meeting the needs for the recruitment and retention of diverse populations of students.
As a student, I can recall several times when professors have shared that the program I am in is “accredited.” My mental response was “That’s nice.” I didn’t care. All I wanted to know was when the next assignment was due, and what I had to do in order to pass that assignment, the class, and then get my degree. Sure, it is great that my program has been given a stamp of approval by some mystery third party, but all of that is outside my realm of experiences.
Then a friend of mine at another university shared that they had failed their bid at re-accreditation. When she graduated, her degree would be from a non-accredited program. I asked her what that meant for her. She told me that it would be harder for her to find a job because employers would see her degree as having less value than one from an applicant who had graduated from an accredited program. Some employers might not even consider her qualified, despite her degree. She had always wanted to move to the New York-New Jersey area, and now she wasn’t sure she could find a job in that competitive market. New Jersey actually has a law requiring applicants to notify employers if their degree is from a non-accredited institution. At that moment, I became alarmed. Does that mean that all of my hard work might come to mean nothing if the program I was in suddenly lost its accreditation?
All of a sudden my immediate focus of passing the current assignment and class seemed less relevant. After all, my current assignment and class would mean nothing if I couldn’t find a job after receiving my degree. I was upset for my friend, who had always studied hard to maintain a high GPA so that she could go anywhere once she graduated. Now her options were limited. Attending and graduating from an accredited program suddenly became important to me, and I realized how important it was all along.
In today’s world of online universities and degrees, employers are concerned about hiring quality individuals. In today’s job market, it can be hard to find a job when there are few positions and many applicants. Employers look to whittle down the applicants they consider, and one of the first filters they use is whether or not the applicant has attended an accredited program.
Don’t let all of your hard work be in vain. Make sure your program is accredited, or you may have just gone to school for nothing.
Elbert E. Maynard
MSA Principal Fellow
East Carolina University
Video Grand Rounds (VGR) provides teacher candidates with an introductory framework for classroom observations and subsequent faculty-guided discussions. This experience provides a conceptual foundation for their future study in teacher education.
Based on the medical grand rounds model, teacher candidates view video segments of typical classrooms, complete structured classroom observation protocols, and then debrief with faculty regarding the observations.
The common classroom observations provide teacher candidates with a common language to discuss quality teaching throughout their programs. These shared experiences lead to in-depth discussions of best practices.
VGR is currently integrated into the Early Experience course in the Elementary Education, Special Education, English Education, Birth-Kindergarten Education and Health Education programs.
In the Professional Standards for the Accreditation of Teacher Preparation Institutions, Standard 1 states that, “candidates preparing to work in schools as teachers or other school professionals know and demonstrate the content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge and skills, pedagogical and professional knowledge and skills, and professional dispositions necessary to help all students learn. Assessments indicate that candidates meet professional, state, and institutional standards.”
In an effort to show that the EPP aligned with NCATE/CAEP Standard 1, the OAA focused attentions on evidences used for assessing candidate learning and dispositions, identified in the unit’s conceptual framework, regardless of location or method of delivery. Dashboard summaries were created for the following exhibits and updates to the dashboards were scheduled to be completed by ITCS in October 2014.
The Fall Clinical Teacher Conference and the 32nd Annual Mary Lois Staton Reading/Language Arts Conference were held October 9th, emceed by Christa Monroe, the College of Education’s Lead Coordinator in the Office of Professional Development and Student Outreach. Jennifer Jones, a K-12 Reading and Intervention specialist was the keynote speaker for the event, motivating audiences with “power strategies to teach like a champion!”
The event was held at the Greenville Hilton, jointly sponsored by the Latham Clinical Schools Network in the Office of Teacher Education and the Department of Literacy Studies, English Education, and History Education, both in the College of Education. This dynamic symposium brought together clinical teachers, reading coaches, instructional coaches and other educators from throughout eastern North Carolina to participate in quality professional development administered by ECU faculty.
An opportunity for networking and educator engagement followed the event. The next conference will be held in Fall 2015.