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The Innovation Center 4 Educator Preparation Convenes Its First Network Cohort

In January 2022, the Innovation Center 4 Educator Preparation (IC4EP) Network gathered to celebrate its inaugural convening. The IC4EP Network members—INSPIRE Texas at ESC4, TOPP at ESC20, and Project P.a.C.E. at ESC1—engaged in a series of sessions designed to advance the quality of teacher preparation.

The first goal for the Network’s assembly was to create a shared vision focused on recruiting, training, and retaining the best teachers for the students in the school districts served. Additionally, during the network convening, educator preparation programs (EPPs) learned, collaborated, and shared tools to address the following objectives:

  • Quality Objective B: Program demonstrates commitment to using data for continuous improvement; and
  • Quality Objective D: Programming is responsive to K‒12 school systems and the communities they serve.

The plural of anecdote is not data, Marc BekoffIn a session led by the IC4EP director, Anne Douglas-Rowald, participants explored and aligned their understanding and language about continuous improvement. The Network members reflected on what and how they collect data, paying attention to who is included and who is missing from the conversation. 

During breakout sessions, each EPP shared how to collect, analyze, and disseminate teacher-candidate performance data and how to make programmatic improvements based on the data, not anecdotal evidence.

Dr. Conra Gist, an associate professor of teaching and teacher education in the College of Education at the University of Houston, presented her latest research on teacher workforce diversity: Building a more ethnoracially diverse teaching force: New directions in research, policy, and practice

In this Kappan Special Report, Gist and co-author Travis J. Bristol present a series of studies organized into eleven strands, each presenting a holistic approach to increasing diversity in the teaching profession demographics. Members of the IC4EP Network, discussed how this study can support their thinking as they engage in mutually beneficial partnerships with their school districts. 

The IC4EP Network is looking forward to continuing its work in partnership with EPPs across Texas and the school districts they serve.