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Education Professor Named to National Commission on Clinical Practice in Teacher Preparation

July 23, 2015

KUTZTOWN, Pa. - Dr. Cynthia Stunkard, assistant professor of education at Kutztown University, has been named to the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE)'s new Clinical Practice Commission (CPC). Stunkard joins a group of higher education and K-12 leaders from across the country, which will examine the state of clinical practice (commonly known as "field experience") in teacher preparation. The CPC is charged with identifying a set of criteria that define clinical practice, lifting up exemplary models in the field and ultimately publishing a set of recommendations for teacher preparation programs nationwide.

The CPC, which includes representation from professional associations, institutions of higher education and K-12 school districts, will work over the next six months to develop a common understanding of effective approaches to field experiences. The group will develop a white paper, to be circulated broadly this fall for input from the field, and will also recommend ways to address common roadblocks to building successful district-university partnerships, such as transportation, funding and scheduling concerns.

"In 2010, the NCATE Blue Ribbon Panel on Clinical Preparation and Partnerships found that clinical preparation was a key lever to high quality teacher preparation," said Rodrick Lucero, AACTE's vice president for member engagement and support, who chairs the CPC. "Although we know how essential classroom experiences are to a candidate's preparation, we also see a broad spectrum of practices being labeled 'clinical.' It is high time to create a shared and actionable definition of what high-quality clinical practice looks like to be able to continually improve individual programs and the field as a whole."

Stunkard was selected to the CPC based on her role as president of the National Association for Professional Development Schools.  

Current members of the CPC include educators involved in AACTE, the Association of Teacher Educators, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, the National Association of Professional Development Schools, the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, the National Network for Educational Renewal, and K-12 schools.

Rodrick Lucero, American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (Chair)

Michael Alfano, Central Connecticut State University

Nancy Dana, University of Florida

Derek Decker, Poudre School District (Colo.)

Christine DeGregory, George Mason University

Danielle Dennis, University of South Florida                                                                                                                        

Elaine Holmes, Poudre School District (Colo.)

Marcy Keifer Kennedy, Ohio University

Amanda Lester, State University of New York

Audra Parker, George Mason University                              

Jennifer Robinson, Montclair State University

Rene Roselle, University of Connecticut

Jennifer Roth, Poudre School District (Colo.)

Lisa Stooksberry, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards

Cindy Stunkard, Kutztown University

Diane Yendol-Hoppey, University of South Florida

Kristien Zenkov, George Mason University

Omar Davis and Tim Finklea, AACTE support staff


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