History of Education, Teacher Training, Teaching, Teachers

A Concise History of Education of Teachers, of Teacher Training and Teaching


Western history of teacher training, education history, teaching theories, education of teachers, modern history od education, began in early 18th century Germany: teaching seminaries educating teachers were the first formal teacher training in Western history of education and teaching.

(History of education had 2nd century-BC Greek Spartan free public education, Athenian Academy until age 18 and higher Academy and Lyceum; Roman private formal schooling in tiers; China’s 1st century-BC administrator examinations; 1st century Jewish informal Cul’ Tura general education; Islam’s 9th century universities [madrasahs]; 16th century Aztec mandatory teen education; 18th century Russian nation-wide education, Poland’s Education Ministry, Chez ‘teacher of nations’ Comenius’s ‘Didactica Magna’ on universal education [compulsory, certified teachers, tests]; leading later Western history of education –17th century Scotland’s free education, 18th’s Norway’s mandatory literacy and  New Zealand’s standard education, 21st’s Europe’s Bologna process equalising educational qualifications.)

Teacher education and training, first teacher training college in French  history of education and history of teaching, Jean Babtiste de la Salle’s 18th century Brothers of the Christian schools, had non-clerical male teachers teaching poor and middle class children. Based on Greek philosophers’ philosophy of education and teaching, re-introduced by Islam, spirituality was not its only reason, basis of education. Teacher education and training had been clerical –this was Western history of education’s first secular teacher training college.

This philosophy of education changed educational history’s attitude to education. It reformed education, educational theory, learning, enabled further education reforms and educational theories of teaching in history of education. With education reforms in education history, educational theory of teacher education required of teachers an understanding of the human mind and the theory of education, knowledge of sciences and arts, principles and educational methods of teaching. This need in educational history for a teaching method, method of education, necessitated theories of education -in Western history of education educational theories on teacher education interested educators.

These educational philosophies and theories of education on teacher education became the norm in Western history of education, teacher training establishments first Normal Schools in the history of education and training of teachers.

Teacher education progressed educational history: in history of education and history of teaching the system of education required and enabled knowledge, in-service experience, certification for teachers, continuing professional development for teachers in teaching. This non-uniform system of teacher education and training enabled teachers, while teaching, at teacher seminars to refresh and increase their knowledge of theory of education and method of teaching -exchanging ideas among teachers.

Napoleon, in history of education and teacher training,  uniformed professional teaching. Adopting Germany’s teacher seminars, in French history of education and in Western history of education and training of teachers, established the first uniform teacher education system.

Neither the USA’s educational history nor British history of education did in educational philosophies, systems of education, include formal teacher education and training, although Elizabeth-I had introduced teachers’ moral teaching fitness certification in teacher education .

In England’s history of education and teaching, in early 19th century Joseph Lancaster and Andrew Bell founded the Lancastarian teaching method of teacher training: in a monitorial system of teacher education and training senior students (‘monitors’) receiving teaching from tutors were teaching junior students, acting as teachers.

In Scotland’s history of education and teaching, 17th century free education compulsory in late 19th, Germany’s teacher education and training influenced David Stowe’s founding the Glasgow Normal Seminary for teachers.

Progress in teaching and teacher training began with Horace Mann’s Massachusetts Normal Schools in the USA’s educational history, and in Britain’s history of education by the churches’ and voluntary organisations’ teacher training colleges and teaching the colonials.

In philosophies of education arguments followed on teacher education in educational history: should persons of lower English social class attend teacher training colleges and give teaching to children of higher social class!? Might teachers’ teaching not influence young French minds with liberal ideas?!

(Japan’s educational philosophy [perhaps influencing the USA’s educational philosophy, history of education and teaching] emphasised patriotic teacher education and teaching.)

In Europe’s history of teacher education and training, Rosencrantz’s 19th century ‘Philosophy of Education’ emphasised ‘philosophical and psychological data’; this, resembling Islam’s university faculties, developed into separate teaching disciplines.

In Sweden’s history of education and teaching, Pestalozzi furthered the progress of systems of education, advocating formal teacher training colleges.

(Pestalozzi, except theologically, was self-educated, did not leave a written account of teaching and of teacher training colleges; his place in the history of education and teaching is deducible in outline from his various writings, loving sincere deeds, the example he set.)

Germany’s Froebel, and Alexander Bain’s ‘Education as a Science’, favoured education of teachers through teacher training colleges; teacher education adopted what philosophies of education in Western educational history and teaching had lacked -Herbart’s pedagogical emphasis in teaching on five formal steps: preparation, presentation, comparison, generalisation, application.

Germany’s teacher education and training became the basis of developments in the history of education and teacher training; Derwent Coleridge and James Kay Shuttleworth in Britain, Mann in the USA broadly agreed: teacher education and training should emphasise techniques of teaching -“not only the subjects of instructions, but also the method of teaching”.

Jules Ferry laws’ compulsory education established teacher education and training in late 19th century French history of education: teacher education and training, by law, should be through formal teacher training colleges.

English speaking countries’ history of education and teaching, formal teacher education and training, began with the University of Edinburgh’s creating a chair in education, with St. Andrews; in the USA’s history of education, e.g., Henry Bernard, Nicholas Murray Butler, followed.

In Western history of education, England’s progress involved pedagogy and Herbart Sepencer’s teaching techniques in teacher education and training, the USA’s e.g., Francis W. Parker’s, studying Germany’s pedagogical teacher education developments.

In the USA’s history of education and teaching the Darwinian hypothesis (as before later scientific evaluation) influenced John Dewey at the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools; taking into account from other disciplines what were considered relevant in teaching to child development, the religiously affiliated Brown University founded an education department.

(The La Salle College in Philadelphia, had been teaching education.)

New York’s Teachers College, founded 1888, was incorporated into the Columbia University, 1893, establishing its teacher training college, announcing: “The purpose of the Teacher Training College is to afford opportunity, both theoretical and practical, for the training of teachers, of both sexes, for kindergartens and elementary schools andsecondary schools, of principals, supervisors, and superintendents of schools, and of specialists in various branches of school work, involving normal schools and colleges” -it became the basis, in Western history of education and teaching, of teacher education and training and Teacher Colleges.

(The USA’s educational history experts’ versions vary on it history of education.) 

In most of British Commonwealth’s history of education and system of teacher training, entry into teacher training came to require senior secondary education at High School level or British Grammar School education with national Matriculation or Ordinary and Advanced General Certificate of Education (GCE) examinations –or equivalent.

In Europe’s history of education and teacher training, education with similar Gymnasium(/Abitur)  or General Lycè e Diploma, or equivalent education, became professional teacher education and training entry qualification.

(In British history of education, until early 20th century, holders of those qualifications, by selection examination, could become temporary teachers. Oxbridge graduates could register ‘master’ and be syndicated teachers. Other universities’ graduates, to become teachers, attended teacher training colleges [if Bachelor of Education, second year teacher training of a teacher training college].)

In British Commonwealth’s history of education greater importance was attached to professionalism in teacher education and training: academic qualifications did not suffice for teaching; teacher examinations required specific periods of specifically professional study in teaching. Professional teaching involved two years’ professional study in teaching and additional in-house teacher training before professional teacher status. Professional teachers could, with another educational year at the teacher training college, specialise in a subject, e.g., geography or history (in farming colonies, e.g., Cyprus where Agriculture became a secondary school examination subject,  with one or two more educational years’ through the Teacher Training College’s Rural Agricultural School). Science graduates without professional teaching training and education qualified for permanent teaching after a year’s classroom teaching experience approved by professionally qualified headmasters, as teachers of their subjects. Teachers were expected to attend teachers’ seminars as continuing professional development.

While professional qualifications are regarded for professional reasons equivalent to doctorates in their counterparts and what qualify for teaching, teacher education and training (school age becoming lower and years less, to enable maturer teachers and teaching), for professional teaching knowledge and skills acquired at teacher training colleges, favoured bachelor degrees with teaching content emphasising skills over theory and, e.g., the USA’s academic ‘first professional degree’ –more for research than professional practice.

(British history of education desired teaching with Post-graduate Certificate in Education [PGCE] -for English state school teaching Qualified Teacher Status [QTS] skills test, and [also if Bachelor of Education] successfully completing an induction year [in Scotland two] in school teaching as Newly Qualified Teacher [NQT], with continuing professional development; alternatively a specific teaching degree or on-the-job teacher training. Teachers trained at Teacher Training Colleges in [former] colonies –and similarly trained teachers with GCSE [grade C] or equivalent in English and Mathematics [for primary school teaching, also Physics] enjoy Qualified Teacher Status.)

(Canada’s provinces or schools certify teachers; Australia requires none for federally funded private schools; France’s is college/bachelor and Teacher Institute [master’s -2010].)

{In the USA’s history of education, until 1960s, one year’s teacher training college education was required for teacher certification. In 1984 an alternate teaching route was introduced: bachelor’s with teaching preparation and within a specified number of years completing a teaching or content based master’s. (Some universities award [with summer study] bachelor degrees in two years, some two bachelor degrees simultaneously [e.g., with two arts and two science majors both BA Philosophy and BS ChE Chemical Engineering]; the  doctoral JD is pre-requisite to master’s LL.M which not all tenured professors need posses.) The ‘Master of Professional Studies’ (MPS) First Professional Degree is academic, not professional. Many states require of teachers, for permanent teaching, examinations in pedagogy and a content area or general knowledge accredited by many private associations’ varying standards; in early 21st century Marlboro-Carolina 20% of teachers had no certification.}

In educational history post general education having been academic for career advancement and scholarly activity or research, or professional for actual practice in the filed, the professional qualification is normally the terminating qualification; in professional teaching, advanced professional degrees enabling specialised teaching, e.g., at universities, are not regarded as part of professional teacher education and training for general education teaching; the USA’s main master’s area is for Ed.D or Ph.D. –research.)

In European history of education, teaching related educational leadership gained importance at the end of 20th century. Desiring the benefits of learnable leadership skills and inherent personal leadership qualities, teachers’ educational leadership skills in teaching leadership are remunerated according to national teacher pay scales.

The USA’s educational leadership teachers’ pay is non-uniform; educational leadership skills standards vary. Graduate educational leadership programs are in, e.g., community issues and educational law. Private Teacher Advancement Programmes (TAP) subscribed by some schools encourage teachers in administrative or teaching development: a teacher prepares an individual growth plan (IGP) with an educational goal or teaching activity, or a cluster group of teachers identify a student learning need, becoming ‘mentor’ or ‘master teacher’/‘teacher of teachers’.

As others’, USA’s teacher training colleges’ comparable teaching qualifications enjoy international regard.

In their history of education, having less aspired to ‘practical’ general education as in the USA and 21st century Britain, most British Commonwealth and European teaching institutions almost uniformly value widely academic general education as culture not acquirable in post general education (e.g., an opposition leader to a Prime Minister [both lawyers] “I as a Grammar School boy” [would not take ‘that’ from him who was not]) and Britain’s suggestion to equate practical skills certificates with general academic qualifications was criticised.

(Early 21st century British educational history saw [university or equivalent  mandatory student grants becoming loans, unemployment necessitating longer and more courses, foreigners scoring higher in English] no increase since late 20th in literacy.)

(In the USA’s history of education, with 20% adult functional illiteracy, as the educationists’ concerns grew, the educationalists considered Europe’s baccalaureate system of education; with growing public interest in education, at the end of 20th century a state appointed three generals to improve the standards of teaching and education and at the beginning of 21st century a general was appointed to federally improve teaching and educational standards.)

In educational history interest in the teaching profession has been based on the status of teachers. Regard for teachers in late 20th century was highest in Russia where teachers enjoyed better employment terms than elsewhere.

(In Britain’s history of education, 1980s’ miss-projection of numbers of teachers needed necessitated engaging science graduates without teaching qualifications as teachers; but a status was enjoyed by teachers of regard as in Europe, and, about the end of 20th century, knighthood for long serving teachers was suggested –due to controversy over peerages it did not materialise. At the beginning of 21st century reducing undergraduate degrees to two years with vocational content was considered, with master’s for teachers -also non-major professional qualifications being above undergraduate degrees in National Vocational Qualifications; but Teachers’ status was regarded to have been equated for economical reasons to classroom assistants’ socially criticised for taking classes without professional teacher education and training.])

In the USA’s history of education, teaching has hailed a form of essentialism in education, with a culture of practicality and model citizenry, emphasising respect for authority (advocated also for 21st century British education); with no general minimum standard in teacher training and education, some states not recognising the teaching qualifications of some others, teachers and teaching appear officially to enjoy no higher regard then Bernard Shaw’s remark (about writers) “Those who can, do; those who can not, teach”.

(In the USA, e.g., some teachers paid only term time having to seek vacation work, teaching and teachers generally are regarded to have enjoyed less good terms and conditions than elsewhere in proportion to social regard and public resources.)

The growth of interest in culture and education in Western history of teaching has been seen in the European Union, e.g., in Cyprus with the popularisation of education in mid. 20th century -reportedly with highest percentage of university graduates by 21st.

In Western educational reforms spiritual values in education are protected by teaching religious studies in schools in American secularism (protection of religion from political influence) and by the religious affiliations of many universities; in European secularism (protecting against one’s formal dominance of the other), often with a state religion enshrined in the constitution, this is ensured by, e.g., Britain’s Education Acts’ requirement in compulsory education of religious worship by pupils at least once a month and, while British universities are not formally religiously affiliated, the availability of  chapels and chaplains to students at universities.

While preferences in education (e.g., the pedagogy based Steiner-Waldorf education for creating free moral and integrated individuals -its teachers’ and schools’ say on defining the curricula by some disagreed with, or Montessori’s pre-school and elementary school child’s self directed activities with auto-didactic equipment -regarded by some as risking raising obedient automatons), and  emphasis (be it practical skills or Emerson’s ‘thinking man’), have all had praise and criticism in the history of education and teaching and arguments continue on pragmatism and creation -v- evolution, generally Socrates’s argument that the rightly trained mind turns toward virtue carries weight in most educational systems. Basically, in every history of education, an important aim of education and the societies’ all time expectations have been on the lines of these verses (by the Cypriot teacher, the late Orhan Seyfi Ari):

” ‘I was an ape’ you say -or amphibian?
And now?! Are you not now.. ‘man’!? ”

The cultural values balance have been more reflected in the education and training of teachers in Western history of education and teaching and the status of teachers in Europe mostly in Spain, Italy and France where, without much disregard to spiritual values, school teachers’ political and ideological affiliations have been the norm in professional teaching.

Accredited K-12 Homeschooling

Whether you look at online learning from the aspect of cost, convenience or even feasibility, it scores over traditional schooling on all counts.

That is exactly what makes online home schooling such a great option for students and parents as well. They have the flexibility they require and also have access to a perfectly economical alternative that caters to their educational needs as well. More than just being cost effective, online home schooling also offers students many more options in terms of courses and electives they can opt for. Traditional schooling systems, however, have certain limitations concerning these areas and tend to throw up a lot more obstacles rather than offer viable solutions. Given the current circumstances, it only seems logical that alternative solutions that work need to be implemented at the earliest.

Online K-12 courses offer students a number of options to choose from. The greatest thing about being able to access your coursework online is that you can do it from practically anywhere and at any time. All you need to do is get your hands on a computer that has access to the Internet. Completion and submission of coursework too, can be done completely online, which certainly makes things a whole lot easier. This definitely offers a more comprehensive solution to address the urgent need for development of skills across the country. Moreover, getting your high school diploma from an accredited online high school in the country will certainly boost your chances of employment. Here are just a few reasons why you should think about earning your high school diploma from an accredited online school like Forest Trail Academy.

For starters, we’re one of the renowned accredited online high schools in the country. Forest Trail Academy is fully accredited and is registered with the Florida Department of Education. Moreover, our school is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI), and is also nationally accredited and a member of National Association of Private & Home Schools (N.A.P.H.S.). Our student testimonials are evidence enough of the quality of education we offer your children and the success rates we’ve witnessed over the past years. We provide our students with a full curriculum that has been aligned and articulated to the Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards.

But that’s not all. In addition to  courses, we also offer you courses for middle school and elementary school as well. We’re also the first online school in the country to have launched an online demo facility that allows you a preview of what it’s like to study in an online environment. If you’d like to know more about us or how to earn your high school diploma online, feel free to get in touch with us at www.foresttrailacademy.com. We look forward to welcoming you into our family at Forest Trail Academy!

Strategies To Help Reduce Elementary School Classroom Noise

Children can be noisy. While noise may simply be a part of working with children, a noisy classroom environment can be disruptive.

Excess noise can also negatively impact the learning environment For these reasons; teachers should take steps to reduce the amount of student noise especially in elementary classrooms. Here are some classroom management techniques that can help to reduce the level of student noise in an elementary school classroom.

One of the best ways to reduce noise in your classroom is to set a positive example for your students. If you as a teacher are loud or shout often in your classroom, you are showing your students by example that noise is acceptable. If you doubt that this is so, try speaking to your students in a calm and quiet voice. You will surely notice a difference in the noise levels in your classroom.

Another way to reduce the noise level in your classroom is to have a “quiet” signal. This signal can be used to quiet down students when necessary instead of shouting at the children to be quiet. Your signal may be holding a book above your head or making a sign with your hand. When your students observe the sign, they should sit down and be quiet. You can reward students who are quick to respond to the signal which will help to reinforce the importance of the concept.

Some classroom noise can be attributed to noisy classroom furniture. Chairs that squeak or wobble or loud desk hinges can not only create noise, but these things can be very distracting for some students. A good way to reduce chair noise is to cut an X in a tennis ball and put the ball over the bottom of the desk chair leg. You can also cover the desk legs too if you move your classroom furniture frequently during lessons.

Noise levels can also become loud when your students are traveling from the classroom to other areas of the building. In order to keep noise levels low during these times, you can keep your students busy by asking them to walk on one of the lines in the floor tiles with their hands down straight at their sides. Your students will be busy concentrating on walking on the line and will not be thinking about chatting with friends.

Another time when noise levels can become unacceptable is after students finish their seat work. Some students will finish early and other students may still be finishing up their work. Students who have finished early may be tempted to talk during these times. One way to reduce noise levels during these times is to have a quiet time activity options available. Perhaps students can read a book brought from home or they can listen quietly to their iPods. Other students may want to color from coloring pages.

Of course, it does take some time and effort to change student behavior. Students who have been used to a loud classroom may need verbal reminders as well as positive reinforcement. It may require diligence to enforce classroom quiet rules. Over time, you will notice a big difference in the noise levels that exist in your classroom.

Reduction in noise levels will mean that students are better able to concentrate on their school work. Lower noise levels also can reduce stress levels and create a positive atmosphere which can benefit for teachers and students.

Home Schooling vs Public Education

For many families, home schooling children is a viable alternative to public education for several important reasons: Strengthening the family, providing adequate education, and to promote moral and religious values.


With a perceived declining in the educational quality of the public school system in America, many parents are coming to the belief that homeschooling can offer their children a better education and result in better opportunities later on in life.

Educational Effects of Homeschooling

Research on homeschooling thus far strongly supports the thoughts of homeschooling parents. An extensive nationwide study showed that home schooled students outperformed their public and private school counterparts in every category. In fact, many homeschool students are enrolled in a grade level that is higher than their counterparts of the same age.

Home schooled children have a higher rate of high school graduation, a higher rate of college attendance, and a higher rate of college graduation.

Homeschooling is About More Than the Education

But for some families, a better education isn’t the only reason to homeschool. Protection from the harsh world that encourages deviation from a successful path is another, as is the opportunity to strengthen the family.

The teen years are an extremely important time in the family building process. Spending six to eight hours away from the home can be very detrimental to a teen’s ability to cement family relationships. Over time, subtle changes can erode family relationships, especially during the more tumultuous adolescent and teen years. By providing a homeschool education, parents can prevent this erosion and help strengthen the family bond.

Additionally, many people believe that public education is not up to the standards that a home school education can provide. No one is more invested in a child’s education than his parents and a home school curriculum can help a child’s ability to learn. For instance, a school teacher may grade your child’s paper and tell him which answers are correct, and which are incorrect and leave it at that. But parents who are homeschooling their children, can spend time to explain to them why the answers are right and wrong, in order to help them learn more thoroughly.

Also, many parents believe that a child’s educational curriculum should include not onlyacademic learning, but also the teaching of morals, ethics, and values. According to recent polls, about 77 percent of Americans identify themselves as Christians. Christian values are an important part of our functioning society and providing children with home schooling is a great way to ensure that they are social and moral values in addition to academic learning.

Questions to ask yourself when looking for an elementary school

Choosing the right elementary school for your child can seem like a task of mammoth proportions. Combine the painstaking process of sifting through the befuddling range of options with the relentless stream of often unsolicited advice, the process can become quite hectic and confusing. With the burgeoning influx of information and advice, it becomes necessary for parents to determine priorities and create a streamlined process to ensure the right decision is made.

As an example, while a school that provides a luxurious environment may attract you because of its professed comforts for your child, you cannot afford to overlook the school’s teaching ideologies. Similarly, a school with a sound teaching ideology also needs to have a secure and well-guarded school environment to ensure the safety of your child.

What follows is a list of the most important questions that you should get answers to when looking for the right elementary school for your child.

  • Do the school’s location and schedule suit you?

This question is usually the first point of inquiry by parents when evaluating different schools. The school should be at a location that is easily accessible by your car or the transportation services provided by the school.

The school’s schedule is another important factor to take into consideration. A school that starts too early or too late for your schedule could make it problematic choice.

  • How secure are the school infrastructure and environment?

Not only should the school’s premises be well-guarded but the school should also employ strict security policies that assure a safe and well-regulated environment for all of it’s students.

  • What is the student-teacher ratio?

Whereas older kids may be able to learn effectively even when the student-teacher ratio is high, younger students need more individualized attention. It is recommended that the student-teacher ratio from kindergarten to third grade should be up to 22:1 while it could go up to 30:1 for grade four and five.

  • What are the school’s teaching ideologies and methodologies?

It is usually beneficial to opt for a school that has concrete ideologies to guide their teaching process. Elementary schools with clear teaching ideologies can help you assess if their teaching style is beneficial for your child. For instance, some schools lay emphasis on child-directed activities while others focus on teacher-facilitated projects.

  • What are the teachers’ qualifications?

Get to know how qualified the teachers at the school are. This can give you an insight into the quality of education provided at the school.

  • Do teachers attend regular training seminars?

Get to know if teachers update their skills and knowledge through training sessions and seminars conducted by the school or outside institutions.

Taking these basic considerations into account can make choosing the right elementary school for your child a more efficient process. One of Brooklyn’s top elementary schools is the Williamsburg Northside Lower School. It is known for its child-centric approach to elementary education. This Brooklyn elementary school has an emergent curriculum that takes shape according to each child’s individual and constantly evolving interests, ideas and curiosities.

Researching schools such as the elementary school in Brooklyn mentioned above can ensure a rewarding learning experience to your child.To know more about Brooklyn elementary school visit: www.willnorth.org/lower_school/

Earning a Bachelor’s Degree Abroad: 5 Factors to Consider First

Studying abroad can be one of the most memorable and unique times of your life. For some college students, earning a Bachelor’s Degree is an impressive undertaking that requires a serious amount of dedication and hard work. Pursuing it overseas provides so many additional opportunities that you just won’t find at a four-year program in the U.S. Not only are you getting a degree, but you also get to see the world and take in experiences that you’re not likely to find anywhere else. How many people do you know that can say they got their Bachelor’s Degree in Europe or somewhere in Asia?

However, as great as this idea may sound, there are some important things to take into consideration before you start to book your airline tickets and search for a place to live. These are five of the most important factors to keep in mind for student travelers headed abroad.

1. Costs

This is the most important thing to consider first. How much is this all going to cost? We’re not just talking tuition either, but lodging, travel expenses, any other fees that are associated with the program such as books and other learning materials. You’re going to have many of these expenses no matter where you decide to go to school whether it’s the University of Michigan or ACU Online, but studying abroad may raise the costs of everything across the board. Don’t forget to factor in the incidental expenditures as well, from food to transportation, and so on. You want to be able to actually explore and enjoy this region of the world where you’ve chosen to study. What good is getting a degree overseas if you’re going to stay in the entire time?

2. Employment

It’s very possible that you will not be working when you are studying abroad, which will impact any current employment situation you may have while going to school here. Those lost wages might negatively impact your finances and you need to decide if missing out on that steady income is worth it. Better yet, you may also want to figure out how you’re going to make up for it while you’re overseas. Are you going to save your money before you leave or borrow some from friends, family, or possibly a bank?

3. Scholarships

One way to offset a good portion of your education costs is by applying for a scholarship. This is a great way to get that all important financial aid which will come in handy. Everyone knows how highly competitive it can be to get a scholarship, but the good news is that you’ll be dealing with far less competition when applying for a study abroad scholarship than you might be up against for a regular scholarship.

4. Eligibility

Before you start to figure out the financial aspect of studying overseas, you may want to check if you even qualify to get your degree abroad. Check with your school to see if there are any pre-approval requirements that must be met before you can even apply. Then look into what the qualifications are for the program you’re interested in pursuing. You might need to have a certain GPA, completed credits, language proficiency, even your major might disqualify you from studying abroad.

5. Graduation

Be sure any program you decide to apply for in pursuit of your Bachelor’s Degree won’t delay the time it takes for you to graduate. Studying abroad is typically optional, very few schools require you to take classes overseas to get a degree, so be sure you check to see if the program you wish to take will extend your course work beyond what might normally be expected.

Advancing Your Skills: Online Teacher Education Courses

If you are looking to enhance your teaching and advance your career, it may be a great choice for you to earn graduate credit for teachers.

High quality, graduate-level onlineteacher education courses are a great alternative to the traditional classroom atmosphere. We all know that teachers are busier than ever, but with online classes, it is easy for teachers to fit time in their schedules. Online courses are easily accessible and will make your time learning fly by! The benefits are also incredible: enjoy fun and flexible learning while earning graduate credit that will allow you to move farther in your career. The onlineteacher education courses will inform you on different strategies and resources to utilize directly into your own classroom. You will not be the only one to benefit from this opportunity. Your students will learn better, your school will gain reputation and your school district will be recognized for improved instruction and student outcomes. All of these results will help increase your chance of a higher salary and a more rewarding career experience.

There is sometimes a misunderstanding that online classes are not interactive since you are not face to face with other people. However, that is not the case at all. Most, if not all, online courses offer the option of online discussion boards so that you can be in constant contact with other colleagues to discuss ideas, problems, and questions regarding your programs of study. Additionally, you receive one on one recommendations and criticism from your professor. When choosing this program, you really are getting the best of both worlds since you can be at home in a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere while at the same time learning material that will prove beneficial in leading to greater opportunities for your future career.

Online teacher certification courses are also developed and taught by highly qualified professors. You will definitely not be caught up in a scam when you choose to enroll. Most universities are now offering online programs because of their convenience, practicality and interactivity. Graduate credit for teachers can be achieved during your own time, with even the degree programs being flexible. In fact, the only face-to-face requirements are the field experiences in your subject and/or grade specialization. To make things even easier, this can be conveniently arranged and completed in a school near you, so that travel time is minimal. The programs are also very practical because you are provided with the tools to lead curricular advancements and instructional improvements, in any subject area of your choice.

During these tough economic times, alternative options to traditional graduate programs must be considered. The advantages of online teacher education courses are evident. They provide a quality education while minimizing costs and travel. Additionally, taking thesecourses will provide the foundation for a strong teaching background and provide a unique perspective on teaching. Teaching certifications and graduate credit provided by these programs make them a viable option. If you are looking to advance your teaching career today, consider the endless opportunities that these online programs will provide.

Music Teacher Insurance Lets You Practice Music Peacefully

Teachers are highly regarded in every corner of the world. Teaching is the only profession that has literally created all other professions.

Teachers are required right from elementary education to higher studies. Even in the vocational sphere, without teachers no one can learn the nuances of a subject. In the music industry teachers are vital parts of the wheel. From learning the basic notes to mastering a musical instrument, everything is possible only with the help and guidance of teachers. If you are a music teacher or instructor, you would know how you are adding value to the life of your students.

Unfortunately, gone are the days when teachers could remain philosophical and engagesolely in teaching students. Today the world has become convoluted and students (or their parents) are regularly slapping charges against teachers. Music teachers are also not above all these and hence the importance of music teacher insurance. Insurance is the only means for music teachers to guarantee themselves financial protectionif any legal case is to burden them.

Music Instrument Replacement
There are several ways that music instructor insurance can be helpful. One of the primary ways is that you can claim insurance money if one or more of your musical instruments is damaged by students during a practicing session. If you teach a bunch of young kids any musical instrument, there is always the risk that they may unknowingly damage or break it. With the right insurance purchased, you can easily get the compensation to replace the instrument.

Studio Protection

In another scenario, music teacher insurancebecomes necessary. If you own a studio and run your music classes from the studio itself, you should have appropriate protection over it. Solid monetary protection is absolutely necessary for music teacherswho run their classes from studio because the risk of damage or breakage is more. Moreover with more than one type of instrument in the students’ easy reach, financial protection is a necessity.

Protection In Cases of Ill Health
Teaching music as a profession means you always will need a few students under you to earn money. But if a situation comes when, due to some reason, you have to stop your music classes what happens to your monthly income? The right insurance policy offers protection in case you are unable to continue your teaching classes due to some injury or health reasons. With no income in the interim time, you can fall back on your insurance to lessen your financial burdens. Once you are fit enough to resume the classes, you can ask the insurance company to stop paying you.

Easy Claims Policy
Most of the insurance companies offering policies for music teachers have very easy claims policy. With the help of such policies, your claims are cleared within no time. Moreover most of the insurance companies are also easily accessible. All you need to do is call them for assistance and they will be by your side within no time.

ROLE OF REMEDIAL TEACHING

Role of Remedial Teaching

In order to improve mathematics, effective remedial teaching is a must. Let us discuss.

Remedial teaching is not re-teaching. Any remedy however costly or sophisticated is useless unless it cures the disease.

A remedial teacher should have a mentality of a sympathetic doctor who has love and care for his/her patients (students).

A. Identification:

a) Through academic achievement:

i) Class interaction: An under-achiever will give wrong answers frequently to the questionsasked. He will appear to be confused. He may probably not respond to the questions asked in the class at all.

ii) Home assignment: An under-achiever will not do the homework. If pressurised to complete the work, he may resort to copying, which may be easily detected.

i)                    Unit tests and term tests: He will show poor performance consistently in tests. He will either not attempt the question(s) at all or, will do cuttings and overwriting. He may even try to copy the solution to the problems from his peers.

b) Through behavioural aspect:

i) Attitude towards academic activities: He will be disinterested in such activities. He will try to refrain himself from such activities. He will try to avoid discussion about academics with his peers or teachers.

ii) Class escapism: He will try to bunk classes for one reason or another. He will give excuses for not attending classes.

ii) Fiddle with notebooks instead of studying: He will be found to fiddle with notebooks and books instead of studying.

Once the under-achiever has been identified, the next step is the diagnosis of deficiencies.

B. Diagnosis of deficiencies:

a) Learning of concepts: His concept(s) related to a particular topic or formula is not clear. For example, the difference between 2×2 and (2x)2 may not be clear to him.

b) Computational Skill: He may not be good at computations and thereby may gives erroneous results frequently while performing basic arithmetical operations and simplification.

c) Procedure of solving problem: He is not clear about the procedure of solving problems and so he/she often gets wrong answers.

d) Application of knowledge: He may not be able to apply the learned knowledge in different situations. For example, in word problems, he may fail to translate sentences into equations or identify the variables.

Once, the deficiency has been diagnosed, let us explore the possible causes for the same.

C. Causes:

a) Memory: Individual capacity of memorising facts and figures.

b) Understanding: Lack of comprehension-he does not follow what he reads.

c) Presentation: Finds difficulty in expressing views-vocabulary is not sufficient.

d) Knowledge Gap: Incomplete coverage units in the previous class-long absence.

e) Parental background: Socio-economic status; education

f) Parental attitude: Indifference of parents towards studies; over-expectation.

g) School Based: Lack of suitable equipment and environment in school-overcrowded class.

h) Medium of instruction: Language problem.

i) Physical factors: Poor eyesight; poor audibility; illness and other problems.

j) Individual factors: Good in oral tests but does not prepare notes and does not do home work regularly; not sincere in studies; very anxious but is unable to concentrate on studies; lacks self confidence; inferiority feeling; fear of failure; wants company of students who avoid classes; emotional instability.

k) Teacher based: Lack of confidence in teacher; lack of time at teacher’s disposal; faulty method of teaching; does not encourage student participation in class; inadequate home assignments and problems for practice; improper way of correction of homework and of guidance to students at appropriate time and stage.; knowledge of the subject is not thorough; unable to clarify difficult concept; lacks in expression; unable to provide secure and affectionate climate in classroom and lack of understanding and acceptance for each individual child.

The causes having known let us now discuss about the possible cures and remedies.

D. Cures and Remedies:

a) Category wise remedial-not more than 5 to 10 students in each class.

b) Personal and individual attention by teacher.

c) No humiliation.

d) Special carefully devised UAA (under achiever’s assignment) – Simpler-Simple-Complex.

e) Read-Re-read-Write-Re-Write-Reproduce-Drill.

f) Group studies; group learning.

g) Micro-notes.

h) Teaching selected portion of syllabus only.

I now propose an action plan to be undertaken by a remedial teacher.

THE ACTION PLAN:

Out of two approaches of evaluation in vogue today, i.e. the process approach focusing on the performance of the teacher and the product approach focusing on the performance of the students with regard to specific objectives-here to get high score in the examinations in terms of marks and subject average, the latter is preferred for sure for obvious reasons. This process is based on the principle that what ever the teacher might have done in the class room is irrelevant unless the objective (of obtaining a high score in the examinations in terms of marks and subject average) is achieved. This then is the primary criteria of evaluation of both the teacher and the taught at all levels.

Herein lies the importance of diagnostic and remedial teaching, which is therefore, the primary responsibility of the teacher. This type of teaching involves:

i)                    Diagnosis of the specific difficulty of the student by conducting a suitable diagnostic test.

ii)                   Providing suitable remedial measures

iii)                 Providing ways and means for preventing them from reoccurring in future.

If a teacher is able to do justice to his primary responsibility then it may safely be presumed that the teaching profession has a bright future in store for sure.

For the benefit of teachers in general, I am now suggesting an action plan on these lines:

a)      Be an innovative and imaginative teacher with an open mind.

b)      Apply suitable diagnostic test to identify the weakness of each child.

  1. For this split the topic into several subtopics. For example, a topic in class X Mathematics “Linear simultaneous equations in two variables” –solution of equations can be split as:

i)                    Adding the two equations directly to find the value of the variables.

ii)                   Changing the sign and adding the equations to find the value of one variable.

iii)                 Making coefficients equal and using i) or ii) above to find the value of the variables.

iv)                 Substituting the value of one variable in the equation to find the value of the other variable.

  1. II. . Set at least 20 questions on each subtopic (They should preferably be      knowledge based)
    1. Take a test of each child. One subtopic to be tested at a time.
    2. As far as possible uniformity is to be maintained while evaluating the test.
    3. A student scoring less than 35% marks in this test is surely having difficulty in the subtopic.

c)      Explore the causes of weakness which may be:

i)                    Lack of understanding/misconceptions.

ii)                   Faulty teaching method.

iii)                 Fear of the subject

iv)                 Bad work study habits.

v)                  Physical and emotional factors like poor health, some mental shock etc.

vi)                 Teacher’s attitude.

d)      The cause(s) having been identified, suitable remedial measure (depending upon the cause) should be suggested which may be:

i)                    Re-teaching of the subtopic—should be resorted to only if the student has completely failed to understand the subtopic due to one reason or the other.

ii)                   Computer Aided Teaching—should be resorted to if the student has a vague idea about the subtopic and therefore finds it difficult to answer questions relating to it.

iii)                 Drilling of Problems—Should normally be prescribed to the weak child during examination times. For this the teacher should be able to design an effective study material containing objective questions, knowledge based problems; the practice/drilling of which will cure the weakness.

iv)                 Other Measures:

The work of the teacher does not end here. He/She must ensure that the student continuously practices upon them to ensure that the weakness does not reoccur in future.

To conclude, it may be said that this is indeed a gigantic task with immediate rewards a remote possibility; therefore requires zeal, enthusiasm and a sense of commitment on the part of the teacher to undertake this project.

Last but not the least; the institution has to play a pivotal role to achieve the ultimate objective. The difference between supervised study (study under the supervision of a teacher) and remedial teaching be clearly understood. The supervised study time table be framed in such a way that a teacher should be assigned at least two periods a week in Maths, Science, English and Social Studies (the subjects where maximum weakness is found). The teacher on his part should not just while away his/her time but should perform these activities as suggested above in letter and spirit and then and only then the ultimate objective can be achieved. He/She must remember that if a student fails then: the teacher has failed; the examination system has failed; the evaluation system has failed and by and large the education system as a whole has failed.

All seems well as regards the theoretical aspect of it is concerned. But when we come to its practical aspect we get confused as to what actually we are expected to do during remediation to achieve the desired quantitative result (Quality comes thereafter!). Therefore, until and unless we are clear about it, we cannot expect improvement in the results whatever strategies/action plans we may make/adopt to do so.

I have therefore decided to deal with it in the following pages taking Mathematics as the subject.

Based on my experience, I have noticed that the teachers of mathematics are unable to detect the basic weaknesses of children right from class VI onwards leave aside removing them and continue to teach year after year the topics to them based on the syllabi in-order to complete the same (for obvious reasons).

I have noticed that most of the students suffer from some basic weaknesses which are:

  1. Weakness in basic operations. Its removal will enable the students to negotiate with BODMAS rule thereby making simplifications easy. Algebra should also be easy for him/her as Algebra may be defined as “Arithmetic of unknown quantities”. Given that the student masters basic operations, the Arithmetic/Algebra/Statistics Portion of Mathematics should be easy to deal with.
  2. Weakness in identifying (understanding) shapes: Its removal will lead to an interest of student in Geometry. This will initiate the student to explore the properties of the shape (closed figures) formed by them leading to understanding of Geometry.
  3. Inability to distinguish between area and perimeter: Its removal will enable the student to solve most of the problems in mensuration.

The teachers can device certain worksheets which may be given to the students repeatedly to over-come their specific weaknesses once they are properly and correctly diagnosed on the basis of factors above.

Some tips for using these worksheets:

  1. The work-sheets should be attempted by HB pencil which is easy to erase later on.
  2. Each worksheet is to be attempted in 5 minutes except the last one which should take 15 minutes for completion.
  3. These worksheets are to be given once a week to each student.
  4. The teacher may use these worksheets during the first two months of the session (April and May) to create an interest for mathematics among the students before starting formal teaching.
  5. After the start of the formal teaching, the teacher should diagnose the weakness of the students (topic wise)-by preparing horizontal mark-sheet in unit tests.
  6. Once the teacher is able to diagnose the weakness of the child in a particular topic worksheets may be provided to the child on that topic during remedial periods to bring the child up to the desired level of competency in the topic. Minimum two work-sheets should be provided to each child and the performance in them is to be judged to ensure that the child has attained the desired level of competency in the topic.
  7. Now where and how to obtain these work-sheets?

I give below some guidelines for the teachers on this issue:

GUIDELINES TO OBTAIN WORK-SHEETS:

  1. Every teacher should create an email account (popularly called E-Mail ID).
  2. The teacher should logon to either: www. mytestbook.com or

www. softschools.com.

  1. He/ She will be asked to register.
  2. On clicking on this hyperlink he/ she will be asked to fill up a form.
  3. Finally he/ she will be asked to submit the same.
  4. On clicking the submit button, the registration will be confirmed and the logon information will be supplied on his/ her E-Mail ID.
  5. Thereafter the teacher may use the username and password provided by him/ her at the time of filling up the form for logon in future.
  6. It is an absolutely free account!
  7. Once the logon is successful, you should opt for automatic work-sheet generator and lo! You are provided with the variety of topics on which work-sheets may be generated.

8.  Click on the desired topic and obtain hundreds of worksheets.

Special education funding in California is causing deficit in school district budgets

School districts are required by federal law to pay for a large portion of special education programs and services.  These programs and services cannot be altered or cut in any way because it is federally mandated, unlike all other programs for the rest of the students.

The short explanation is that federal law mandates it, as set forth in the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act  [20 USC 1400 et seq.].  This law, also called IDEA, enumerates the required needs for students with disabilities.  We all agree that students with special needs must be accommodated, additional care is necessary.

However, most of us do not know the details of the funding and spending on this issue.   In addition to the IDEA federal mandate, the State of California also sets forth special education funding apportionment in its Assembly Bill 602 SELPA [AB 602].If you read these codes on its face and believe that the state and federal government will fund the programs as set forth in therequirements, then you’re not alone.  Must of us assume that this mandated federal and state law will come from separate federal and state funds.  Most people who I asked assumed that special education is funded entirely by federal government disability funds.  It does make sense since it is a federally mandated requirement.  The state and federal statutes require schools to provide “free and appropriate public education” for special education students.   Here is the shocking news, local school districts are responsible for this “free and appropriate public education.”

In fact, IDEA section 1400(c)(6) cites that states and local education agencies are responsible for providing the education for students with disabilities, but that the Federal Government will have a role [emphasis added] in assisting the state and local education agencies.  If you sample a school district’s budget, you will find for example [PVPUSD] it receives $5,049M from the state [AB 602] in addition to the federal IDEA grant which is approximately $2M.  However, the actual costs for the special education programs in this district total approximately $22M.  This district has reported a deficit spending for special education in the sum of $12.5M which is almost double the amount it receives in funding from the federal government and state, combined.  This school district has to find and fund $12.5M in excess of the sum provided by the government funding.

How could special education needs add up to such a colossal amount and cause such a deficit for local school districts? In the code, you will find that required programs such as one-on-one aids are mandatory for each qualifying special needs child. Transportation, specialized at-home care and a host of other services are also required under the law.  I asked the California Department of Education why local school districts are not receiving more funding for special education requirements.  I asked how the local special education funding from the state is apportioned.  Becky Robinson of the CDE Special Education Department stated that “all funds, federal or state, must be approved by the governor.”  I checked, she is right.  The Budget Act of 2008-2009 AB 1781 (chapter 268) sets forth the budget for special education as determined by the state budget and the governor. At a time when teachers and administrative staff are being laid off en masse, it is difficult to understand why school districts are forced to spend an additional $12.5M on special education program requirements, when state budget cuts are forcing school districts to cut teachers and programs elsewhere.  $12.5M could solve all of the local budget woes and keep the teaching and administrative staff employed for the benefit of the entire school.  The answer is that special education programs are depleting the school districts’ budgets as administrators make cuts to prioritize the federally mandated programs for special education.

Another item for budget in the statute that I should mention, is the special needs education conflict and dispute resolution.  There are law firms that specialize in representing students with disabilities and negotiate the settlement for district’s alleged failure to comply with the established statutes and regulations under the federally mandated IDEA.  This means that the statutes for special education inherently set forthguidelines for legal action following administrative proceedings should a parent identify a violation of their child’s “free and appropriate public education.” Many school districts have greatly suffered from lawsuits brought by parents who claim that their special needs child’s rights were not met under the code.  Case in point, Porter v. Board of Trustees of Manhattan Beach Unified School District et al., 307 F. 3d 1064 (9th Cir. 2002), 537 U.S. 1194, 123 S. Ct. 1303, 154 L. Ed. 2nd 1029 (2003).

In the case of Porter, the parents of a student, who had been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, charged that  Manhattan Beach Unified School District failed to provide their child with a “free appropriate public education.”   This lawsuit resulted in the school district paying over $6.7M to the family of the student.  In addition, as part of the settlement, control of the student’s education was transferred to a Special Master, Ivor Weiner, Ph.D., resulting in the cost of just under $1.1M to pay for the education of the student at the direction of the Special Master.

The problem is that whether or not this school district properly complied with the federally mandated programs and services for this student, the school district was forced to make cuts elsewhere to pay for this legal settlement.   Why has the federal government mandated such broad standards for special education and then leave local school districts to oversee, manage and fund these programs?

Since the subject of budgets and special education is not a topic that people are willing to discuss, reform in this regard is unlikely.  Certainly, special education programs and services are not to blame for this problem.  This problem belongs squarely on the lap of the federal government under the mandated IDEA laws.

Still Don’t Know What a Charter School Is?

For over 22 years charter schools have existed in this country yet I am still asked the question: “Just what is a charter school?” Or worse, someone thinks they know what it is and their thoughts are far off base.

Not knowing and misinformation about charter schools is a common experience for many.  For those that do know, many in that group are divided about the values or dangers of the role charter schools play in education.

A charter school is a form of public education.  Each state legislates how the school is granted a charter to begin receiving public funds and how the school is held accountable.  Students enrolled in a charter school are the same as if they were enrolled in that state’s traditional public school.  Academic requirements, graduation requirements and all federal laws for public education are basically the same for a charter school student.  So, why bother? Why have two separate education systems?

Well, initially the thought was that by creating competition in the public school marketplace, parents were given a choice.  No longer was expensive private school tuition or homeschooling the only option a family had.  Charter schools were set loose to become innovative.  Many were created with the mission to replicate a better version of traditional schools.  Others were created with a specific mission of reaching a targeted group of students whose needs might not be met in a larger system.  For instance, one school in Texas was initially created to provide public school for a travelling group of student performers.  That school has since evolved to include any student performer.  Currently the trend seems to be aimed at reaching at-risk students that are not successful in traditional environments.

This education experiment has unleashed a plethora of problems.  Local authorities charged with overseeing charters weren’t clear what the rules would be and they issued charters to well-meaning educators that most often were not even told what those rules were either.  Everyone charged out of the gate with best intentions.  Rules changed, communication was weak or non-existing, training was poor and these infants in public education were left to run before they could walk and compete with public schools that in many case were in existence for over 100 years.

Charter holders recall events when their schools were sent state agency auditors to examine the school when the auditors themselves did not know what a charter school was.  Yet their reports would stand as the definitive evaluation of whether or not the school was performing to the standards that were required, standards that were not even applicable to the school in question.

In spite of all the growing pains, successful stories have sprung from many of the nations’ charter school students and their families.  Families without hope found success in the local community charter school specialized to meet their needs.  Charters are after all a school of choice, so many would ask why they are not left to free enterprise and rather than be held to the same standards as a traditional school, why not just let the free market determine their sustainability?  Why drain precious resources evaluating a school when the parents and students are fully capable of deciding?

Then there is the much more controversial question.  Are charter schools a danger to public education, as we know it?  Quite possibly. Competition and choice do bring change.  In this instance, the controversy lies in whether or not such change will benefit our futures.  While small community schools were the first wave of charter education, large corporate management companies have begun to see the financial benefit of owning and operating  “chain” schools across the country.  A small hand full of large investor/philanthropists such as the Walton’s (WalMart), the Dell foundation, the Gates Foundation and Michael Milken (formerly known as the junk bond king) are all heavily vested in the charter school industry.

With so much controversy, so much positive and negative publicity, it is a challenge for thesmall school model that was initially thought of as incubators of innovation in public education.  Today’s parent has access to so much information to make informed decisions about their child’s school.  Unfortunately, they may be reading more misinformation than they realize.

 

Methods for effective teaching

I hear and I forget.

I see and I believe.

I do and I understand.

– Confucius

The conventional “chalk and talk” method of teaching that’s persisting for hundreds of years have now become outdated when compared with the more modern and innovative teaching methods that are available for use today, specially in, pgdm colleges in delhi . Greater student interaction is encouraged, the boundaries of authority are being broken, and more emphasis is laid on enjoyment than grades.

The various teaching techniques with their potential benefits and drawbacks are discussed as under:

Authoritative style

It is teacher-centeric method and frequently entails long lecture sessions which are one-way presentations. Students are expected to take notes.

  • Benefits: This style is adequate for certain higher-education disciplines and auditorium settings with large groups of students. This method is most appropriate for subjects which demand memorization of key facts.
  • Shortcoming: This method lacks a two way interaction and is only one way.  Therefore it is not advisable to be used much.

Trainer style

The trainer or teacher preserves the formal authority role while allowing teachers to exhibit their knowledge by showing students what they need to know.

  • Benefits: This style gives teachers a chance to add in a variety of arrangements including lectures, multimedia presentations and demonstrations.
  • Shortcomings: Although it’s suitable for teaching mathematics, physical education,arts and crafts, yet it is difficult to accommodate students’ individual requirements in bigger classrooms.

Activity style

Facilitators encourage self-learning and facilitate students develop critical thinking talent and maintain knowledge that leads to self- actualization.
  • Benefits: This style trains students to ask questions and helps them develop skills to find answers and explanation through study This style is perfect for teaching science and similar subjects.
  • Shortcomings: This technique is a challenge for teacher to interact with students and prompt them towards innovation. Less emphasis is laid on lecturing facts and testing knowledge through memorization.

Group style

This style is most suitable for programs that requires lab activities, such as chemistry and biology, or subjects that demand peer feedback, like debate and creative writing.

  • Benefits: Enquiry-based learning places the teacher in spectator role that motivates students by working towards common goals.
  • Shortcomings: Though it is a modern style of teaching, yet it is sometimes condemned as a novel and geared towards teacher as a advisor rather than the conventional authority figure.

The procedure of teaching and learning is best fulfilled in pgdm colleges when both theteacher and the student end up being augmented with education. The method employed for teaching plays an imperative role as it targets the grasping ability. The level of interest increases only if some well-formulated techniques are incorporated to the normal teaching pedagogy. The unexciting, dull and monotonous lessons can also attract the attention of the students.

Teacher Professional Development for Multicultural Education

Communication skills are critical for success in any classroom. In multicultural education, communication skills are even more important because students and teachers often face language and cultural barriers at the same time. Teacher professional development can help to train teachers to adjust to a multicultural classroom and foster a collaborativeenvironment that is beneficial to their students and other educators.

When learning to teach in multicultural education, there are several important ideas that teachers must become familiar with. First, the teacher should educate him- or her-self on a variety of cultural influences in our society, and in particular the cultural influences specific to the location where he or she is teaching. Having things in common is one of the best ways to create strong relationships, and teachers can make their students feel more at ease by laying the groundwork for a successful team (team = classroom). Multicultural teacher professional development should include resources and suggestions for cultural influences that teachers should familiarize themselves with.

An ambitious end goal for a multicultural education program would be to restructure our schools to promote equality and acceptance for all students and educators. We may be on the way towards that objective, but there is still much work to be done. Multicultural education can be improved via changes in all areas of a school’s framework – the curriculum, the way teachers teach, how students are grouped together, how students are tested, and community participation. The diversity of backgrounds of students (low or high income, native or non-native English speakers, feminist or male-dominated cultures, Western or Eastern background, and even mono- versus multi-cultural exposure, and more) should be accounted for; all students’ situations must be taken into consideration. Incorporating these changes is a large undertaking and an ongoing endeavor.

Once teachers have a good idea of the existing cultural differences, they must learn to apply the findings that are relevant to their situation and they must learn to employ strategies to facilitate communication within their classroom across the different cultural backgrounds present. Even in a classroom that is not so diverse, it is still important for students to learn multicultural education skills because they will undoubtedly be in situations later on in life that will require those skills.

So here are some action steps for teachers when beginning to learn teacher professional development for multicultural education:
–Look at your current teaching strategy: what methods are you using? What textbooks and workbooks are in the classroom? What is the curriculum? Do all of these things incorporate components of multicultural education?
–Involve your students in your learning process as well. Ask them for their input about what they know already and what they want to know.
–Ask questions of both your students and yourself – find out how they know what they know already and where the knowledge gaps are.
–Look at the topics you are teaching/learning from different cultural perspectives. Then relate these topics to your students’ life experiences and our current society.
–Explore the cultures present in your classroom and learn about what differences may exist.

Teacher professional development is a great way to embrace and learn about multicultural education. These topics are important for all teachers to learn!

Pakistan’s Education System – Problems and Reasons for Policy Failure

After more than a half century of independence, nearly half of Pakistan’s population is still illiterate. According toHathaway (2005), Pakistan’s education system is regularly cited as one of the most serious impediments preventing the country from achieving its potential.

Poorly produced and inadequately implemented educational policies and plans have been major hurdles in the development of the education sector in Pakistan. Throughout ourhistory, new policies and plans have often been prepared without giving due consideration to the causes of failure of previous policies and plans.

In order to address these problems, there is a need for the formulation of rational policies and plans as well as an adequate system for their implementation. The objective of this paper is to scrutinize the problems being faced by the education sector in Pakistan. It also seeks to highlight the reasons for the failure of the national education policy.

Background of Pakistan’s Education System

According to several international assessments, Pakistan is far from achieving the goal of Education for All (henceforth, EFA). The EFA was set to be attained by all developing countries under the Dakar Framework decided at a meeting held in Senegal in 2000. UNESCO attributes Pakistan’s placement at a lower EFA development Index (EDI) category to low primary school participation, adult illiteracy, gender disparities, inequalities in education and poor quality of education. The adult literacy rate in Pakistan is under 50 percent, while less than one-third of adult women have a functional reading ability. Pakistan is unlikely to achieve the adult literacy target by 2015. Progress is slow, while gender parity goal is at risk of not being achieved in 2015. Moreover, more than 6 million children are out of school. (UNESCO 2007)

Key Performance Indicators for Education Systems

The frequently used indicators are adult literacy rates, male and female enrollment at different levels and in different areas of the country; the dropout rates, the amount of resources committed to education as a proportion of the GDP and, finally, some measure of the quality of education provided. To these indicators, one should also add the quality of data and information available about education. Unfortunately, Pakistan’s record is relatively poor on all these counts.

An Overview of Problems being faced by Pakistan’s Education Sector

According to the Asian Development Bank, Pakistan’s education sector is marred by corruption, strong gender and regional inequalities and insufficient budget allocations, leading to social imbalances and poor delivery of services in the public sector.

Insufficient Budget Allocation

While the share of public education expenditure in national budgets increased in many regional countries moving towards Universal Primary Education (UPE), it has declined in Pakistan. According to the International Crisis Group, Pakistan is one of only 12 countries in the world that spends less than 2 percent of its GDP on education.

Under utilization of Funds

Less than fifty percent of the funds allocated for development expenditure of the Ministry of Education at the federal level are actually utilized (Aly 2007). A major reason for this underutilization of funds is their complex financial allocation and release system.

Corruption

Corruption is one of the major contributing factors for failure of educational policy. It is due to lack of accountability and transparency along with low salaries of the staff. An estimated Rs. 2,594 million out of a total of Rs. 7,016 million provided for improvement of school facilities such as buildings, electricity, drinkable water, etc had gone unaccounted during the fiscal periods 2001-06. (UNESCO 2007) Similarly more than 70% literacy centres in Punjab are inoperative or exist only on paper(ADBP 2007).

Gender Discrimination and Regional Inequalities

The adult female illiteracy rate in the country was twice as high as for males, according to a report released by the International Labour Organization (ILO) in September. The illiteracy rate was 23.3% for males and 46.9% for females. According to the National Economic Survey, Balochistan had the largest number of schools in disorder. It also had the lowest number of educational institutions, the lowest literacy rate among both males and females, the lowest ranking in the Gender Parity Index and the fewest private educational institutes in the country.

Multiplicity of Systems leading to Social Imbalances

There are many systems working in the country, resulting in social division and conflict. The students from the elite class follow the “O” and “A” levels curriculum instead of Pakistan’s domestic poor quality curriculum. They have little or no awareness of their religion and culture whereas those passing out from Urdu medium schools are usually destined to work in clerical and lower level positions. Religious madrassas churn out yet another class that is usually unaware of the world outside their own.

Poor Delivery of Services leading to Low Enrolment in Schools

Teacher absenteeism, untrained teachers, inadequate materials and obsolete teaching methods are the main reasons for low enrolment in schools. According to Burki, most of the public schools are poorly managed, impart education of poor quality, use poorly written textbooks and use curricula that are not relevant for the needs of the 21st century.

The dropout rate of those lucky enough to be enrolled was 45%. According to several reports, most of the public sector educational institutions remain in a state of disrepair and lack even basic facilities resulting in substandard education. There are four areas that cry for immediate attention; curriculum, textbooks, examinations, and teacher training. (Hoodbhoy 2001)

Private Schools

In comparison with other countries; private basic education in Pakistan enrolls more students than in all countries in the region. The rapid growth of private schools and teaching academies reflects the people’s lack of trust in the public sector schools coupled with a deficiency of sufficient educational institutions to cater to the needs of the fast growing population. However, most of the private schools are only slightly better than the public ones. A few elite schools offer quality education but their inflated fee structure continues to be a problem.

The Policy Environment and Reasons for its Failure

National Education Policy (1998-2010) was prepared prior to Dakar, but since 2001, the Ministry of Education has developed a number of interrelated policy documents after active consultations with NGOs and international development agencies. However, serious problems exist in the policy environment.

Firstly, these problems are arising due to lack of commitment and inefficient management on part of the state. The policy lacks long term vision and its implementation is affected by undue political interference. Moreover, it is not evidence based and reflects the vested interests of the authorities. It does nothing to promote rational and critical thinking skills amongst the students.

Additionally, there is a lack of resource commitment, absence of a realistic implementation plan and poor utilization of resources which are allocated. As relevant statistics are not available, implementation of the education policy has not been successfully executed.

Also, due to weak budgetary planning, the financial data is not centralized and coordinated (USAID 2006). There is a lack of coordination in need assessment and project design and implementation within the government and the donor agencies. Similarly, there is hardly any harmonization between the federal and provincial governments which leads to poor policy implementation.

Another problem with the policy formation process is that little attention is being paid to strengthen the planning wing of the Ministry of Education.

There are also complaints that the government’s consultation with the non-state sector does not necessarily result in action. Teachers have also been generally ignored in the policy making process. So another reason for the failure of our educational policy is consultation without implementation. (UNESCO 2007)

While the policy environment has been favourable to dialogue, and mainly the private but also the public sector has made some contribution to improving access, the challenges to improving quality remain largely unresolved despite much policy deliberation.

Conclusion

As education is the backbone in the development of any nation, the countries that have an effective system of education also happen to be the leaders of the world, both socially and economically. In short it is education, which can turn the population of any country from a burden to human resource. Pakistan’s dire state of education sector and policy implementation demands immediate attention from the government. Without doubling its current financial commitment to education, Pakistan cannot address the numerous challenges to meeting EFA targets by 2015.

References

Hoodbhoy, P. (2001). What are they Teaching in Pakistani Schools Today? Retrieved December 5, 2008, from http://web.mit.edu/bilal/www/education/hoodbhoy1.html

Burki, S. J.  (2005). Educating the Pakistani Masses. Retrieved December 6, 2008, fromhttp://www.wilsoncenter.org/topics/pubs/FinalPDF.pdf

Hathaway, R. M.  (2005). Education Reform in Pakistan: Building for the Future. Retrieved December 6, 2008, from http://www.wilsoncenter.org/topics/pubs/FinalPDF.pdf

Aly, J.H. (2007). Education in Pakistan: A White Paper (Revised). Documentation to Debate and Finalize the National Education Policy. Islamabad: Government of Pakistan, National Education Policy Review Team.

Bano, M. (2007). Pakistan Country Case Study: Education for All by 2015, Will we make it? UNESCO.

Din, N & Ansari, S. (2008). State of Human Rights in 2007

Iftikhar, A. Recommendations for Improving Education in Pakistan.

The Socioeconomic Impact of Charters Schools in Texas

Introduction:

              Due to the decline in the quality of public education in Texas, state lawmakers passed legislation in 1995. The new law permitted the opening and implementation of charter schools. These new charters schools encourage and support innovative teaching for a variety of learning styles, improve the achievement of students, and provide options within the public school system (Terry and Alexander 2008, 4). Prior to the new legislation, there was no opportunity for choice within the public school system with regard to a child’s education, and children attended school according to their zip code. That deficiency began to change when the first charter school in Texas opened in the fall of 1996.

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) reports that the “first generation” of charters consisted of 17 schools and had a collective population of 2,412 students. Legislation initially limited open-enrollment charters to 20 schools; however, lawmakers increased the cap to 100 schools in 1997 and to 215 schools in 2001 (Story 2007, 1). As of 2007, Texas had one of the largest and most flexible charter school programs in the United States (Story 2007, 1). Currently, Texas charter schools serve over 113,000 students, an estimated two percent of all public school students.  Moreover, of those 113,000 students in charter schools, 80 percent are minority and 60 percent are economically disadvantaged students (Terry and Alexander 2008, 7).

Research Analysis-Lifting the Cap:

The State of Texas currently has 210 active open-enrollment charter schools.  In addition, Texas will likely reach the cap of 215 open-enrollment charter schools by 2009. If the cap remains in place, many parents and children will be at a disadvantage, unable to choose the best quality education for their families. Many charter education supporters have and will continue to push for greater parental control and increased accountability with an emphasis on improved public relations. However, these supporters encounter a lot of resistance, because opponents see charter schools as competition to the public schools.  Consequently, increased restrictions and mandates stifle charter school growth.

If the Texas government and the education policy stakeholders review the statistical findings and evaluate the impact of open-enrollment charter schools in Texas, they will find a clear picture of the positive outcomes charter schools provide. It becomes apparent through the examination of the economic and social factors of open-enrollment charter schools that lifting the cap on the number of open-enrollment charter schools in Texas would be beneficial to the current public school system.

Contrary to common public perception, charter schools are public schools.  Similar topublic schools, charter schools cannot charge tuition according to state law. However, “charter schools have a significant amount of autonomy and are free to be innovative in educational and administrative practices,” as stated on the Resource Center for Charter Schools (Technology Help for Administrators 2008).  Before a charter school in Texas breaks ground, the entity must submit a proposal, similar to a business proposal, for approval, which typically includes a mission statement, a philosophy and a vision. Furthermore, the proposal provides information regarding basic logistics, including class size, number of school days and hours, the programs that will service students and a projected budget. On many occasions, charter schools seek the help of outside agencies to provide guidance, classroom modeling, in-house training, and resources in order to assist in achieving the mission. For example, an open-enrollment charter school in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania used a research based program / agency from San Francisco, California called the “Developmental Studies Center” (DSC). The DSC trained the faculty, provided resources and provided ongoing support in order to achieve the school’s mission and goal. In fact, the school bases its philosophy on a democratic model that gives students a voice, which promotes and fosters the students’ academic, social, and emotional growth. Significantly, this school recognizes the existence of multiple intelligences and diverse learning styles. One program that addresses the choice of students and multiple intelligences is the choice of electives for all of the student population once a week. They also incorporate a “service learning program” to assist in molding stewards of the community (Service Learning Programs, 2008).

Similarly, in Houston, Texas, “KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) Academy Houston,” whose mission is to “help…students develop academic skills, intellectual habits, and qualities of character necessary to succeed in high school, college, and the competitive world beyond” is a very successful charter school that services grades 5-8 (U.S. Department of Education 2008).  Texas recognized it as an “exemplary school” every year since 1996, and the U.S. Department of Education recognized it as a “Blue Ribbon” school. The dedication of its teachers and administrators, including being on call by way of cell phone 24/7 to address the academic needs of students led to this success of the charter school (U.S. Department of Education 2008).  This innovative dedication would not be something conducive to the public school sector.  In view of the fact that employees of mainstreampublic schools, are subject to collective bargaining and union contracts, have set hours and specific responsibilities in their contracts and do not deviate from them.

By employing the flexibility of the charter program and by working outside the traditional eight hours of instructional time for students, the American Youth Works in Austin, Texas is a charter school that is able to better focus on the unique needs of its students. The school allows students half a day to pursue employment opportunities, to participate in work study programs or to take care of family members, including the students’ own children. The school requires the students to fulfill only four hours of traditional instructional time in order to accommodate the individual’s life experience (Terry and Alexander 2008, 4).

Other charter schools may extend the school day in order to improve academic achievement or may extend the school year to expose the students to supplemental material and expanded learning. Equally important, a mission aimed at addressing the varied learning styles through the theory of multiple intelligences may be the goal of another charter school. There are even charter schools that focus on the arts, architecture and design, leadership, and literacy. Charter schools generally do not fit the traditional model of the mainstream public school; instead, they find ways to educate children and stimulate learning based on innovative ideas and strategies.

When a charter is operating, the entity will receive direct funding from the state and the federal government. However, charters do not receive funding for their facilities, so it is up to the charter school to raise money, solicit donations, apply for startup grants from the federal government or choose to borrow from private lenders (Terry and Alexander 2008, 5).

Terry states, in a “GO San Angelo” article, that charter schools may not charge tuition, teach religion, discriminate, or cherry-pick students (Terry 2008, 1). To elaborate, if a charter school encourages families to volunteer 20 hours of their time to help with various needs of the school such as painting, helping in the classroom, making packets, cleaning, etc., the school cannot in any way enforce this as a “requirement.” If a family is penalized in any way, such as a student being removed from school for incompletion of hours, it would be considered payment for education. Moreover, charter schools may not discriminate in the enrollment of students or cherry-pick, select a student based on academic performance, behavior, or other preferential selection, its admissions..

Charter schools require different regulations compared to traditional public schools (Terry and Alexander 2008, 5). An example is that charter schools, as opposed to mainstream public schools, require teachers to provide parents and guardians of students in their school with a written notice of their qualifications. Another example of the differences in regulation is under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Federal Regulation Part 300, which reauthorizes the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA). Originally, law required charter schools to provide and complete academic testing for a child within 60 school days from the date of a request from a parent or guardian, while it required traditional public schools to provide and complete the same within 60 calendar days.  Under the reauthorization, the requirement changed to 60 school days for both public and charter schools. Before this became universal for both mainstream public and charter schools, it was a disadvantage for the charter schools to adhere to the time restraint because it was more difficult in terms of the high cost of academic testing and limited funding.

To be sure, accountability is universal for district public schools and charter schools, as the pressure of No Child Left Behind impacts both sectors of education. Both are required to administer standardized tests, and all students must test at their current grade level rather than their level of ability. For instance, an eighth grader who is reading at a third grade level must take the eighth grade reading standardized test.

According to the article “Texas Charter Schools: An Assessment in 2005”, produced by the Texas Public Policy Foundation, “when student performance is evaluated on the basis of test scores, students in Texas charter schools perform on the average lower than do students in traditional public schools. However, when changes in test scores are used to judge performance, academic gains by charter school students can be demonstrated” (Patterson 2005, 5). This means that even though some charter school students’ performance does not exceed the performance of traditional public schools according to standardized test results, the students are individually making better academic progress in the charter schools. In addition, because most charter schools typically specialize in helping disadvantaged youth, many students in charter schools identify as an at-risk population for dropping out of school and come from low income homes which could hinder their test performance (Terry and Alexander 2008, 5). Accordingly, basing decisions of success on standardized test scores is an unfair assessment of charter school performance.

Currently, the government enforces some regulation on charter schools that forces them to shut down if they have two consecutive years of undesirable performance, which typically measures by standardized test scores. This is harsher and inequitable compared to the five years allowed for the mainstream public school districts (Terry and Alexander 2008, 5). For example, a charter school may be able to improve a fifth grade student whose reading level is equivalent to third grade but still fail with unacceptable performance because the student failed the fifth grade Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test reading section (Terry and Alexander 2008, 1).

During the 2007-2008 school years, 113,760 students enrolled in charter schools in Texas, and an estimated 16,810 students were on a waiting list (Terry and Alexander 2008, 4). Houston’s regional charter school’s waiting list was the largest at 7,415 students; coming in second was the Dallas / Fort Worth region at 5,896 students, and Rio Grand Valley had 2,110 students.  Furthermore, the Austin region had a waiting list of 623; the Corpus Christi region had a waiting list of 159; and the San Antonio region had a waiting list of 488 students (Terry and Alexander 2008, 4). According to Robelen, since these numbers stem from a survey in which only half of the schools participated, the actual number of students on a waiting list for charter schools in Texas is likely higher (Robelen 2008, 1).

The large number of students on the waiting lists for charter school enrollment demonstrates the significant demand for educational options, which is the fundamental purpose of the legislation for charter schools. The rapidly growing number of students on waiting lists demonstrates the need for lawmakers to lift the cap limiting the number of charter schools in Texas.  When a charter school has more applicants than they can allow, an enrollment lottery determines which students will be attending the upcoming school year.  Terry asks readers to “imagine parents, whose child is trapped in a low-performing public school, crying for joy that their child is randomly selected to attend a school with a track record of serving at-risk students with innovative strategies” (Terry 2008, 1). On the other hand, one can imagine the cries of a parent whose child is a student in a low-performing public school when their child looses the enrollment lottery.

There are four different types of charter schools: open-enrollment charters, district charters, university charters, and home-rule district charters. Open-enrollment charter schools service the largest population, 89,156 students as of the 2007-2008 school year. Open-enrollment charters are by definition independent school units and can have multiple campuses. The school district operates the district charter schools that consisted of 23,275 students in the 2007-2008 school years. University charters are generally in operation at public senior university or college and consisted of 1,329 students attending 19 different university charter schools in 2007-2008. Furthermore, a home-rule charter means districts have the ability to convert into charter school status which includes an extensive voting process. There is no cap on the number of district charters; however, there are no home-rule charter schools operating in Texas (Terry and Alexander 2008, 3).

Open enrollment charter schools do not drain financial resources from mainstream public schools because they do not receive state funding. In fact, the excess money in the state education budget applies to the student’s home district and the neighboring school where the child resides. For example, in the 2005-2006 school year, the cost per student in Texas was $9,629; charter schools were given approximately $1,500 less per student (Terry and Alexander, 2008a, 1). Thus, operating a charter school saves the district money in educating a child because charter schools expend less money per child.

Because charter schools receive less money per student compared to mainstream school districts in Texas, it is necessary for charter schools to incorporate fund raising into their fiscal plans. Moreover, charter school fundraising brings more dollars into the public sector.  According to the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, in Illinois the total of public and private funding for charter schools brought in a total of $11 million dollars to help educate the youth. In addition, charter schools introduce new resources into public education. Grants provide funds designed for charter schools phases such as, planning, development, and initial implementation which are not available to the public school system if charter schools were not in existence (National Alliance for Public Charter Schools 2008).

It is incorrect for the districts in Texas to believe that charter schools negatively impact their bottom line or hinder their budgetary plan. In the event of the opening of a new charter school, the state provides the district with short term financial aids in order to prevent an impact on the school district revenue (National Alliance for Public Charter Schools 2008). Because charter schools typically enroll a diverse student body with a variety of characteristics, the fiscal impact is a factor of enrollment only (National Alliance for Public Charter Schools 2008). In addition, public and charter schools receive a percentage of money for students with disabilities; therefore, the public district receives an even higher amount than the $1,500 per special education student.  Finally, socioeconomic factors dictate funding for individual students and services offered (National Alliance for Public Charter Schools 2008).

Districts can easily reduce expenses to adapt to charter schools. The National Alliance for Charter Schools, reports that school districts can often adjust to student enrollment fluctuations-where there may be some key adjustments the first year, the following years have little to no impact on the school district (National Alliance for Public Charter Schools 2008).   The National Alliance for Charter Schools also believes that if a charter school is thriving, and the district cannot adjust to the fluctuation in enrollment, it is likely due to the district’s own failed policies and rules (National Alliance for Public Charter Schools 2008).

Charter schools in Texas increase the employment of teachers in the district as well. Many teachers struggle to obtain a teaching position once they graduate and charter schools open the doors for many of these qualified teachers to find a job in education. The state law only requires teachers to be state certified to work in a charter school if they specialize in special education or bilingual education (Terry and Alexander 2008a, 6). The state government in Texas does not require charter schools to employ certified teachers, but many choose to do so, especially with the shortage of teaching opportunities. Story supports this by stating statistics that show charter schools employ 26 percent of new teachers in the field compared to traditional public schools, which employ a mere 7 percent respectively (Story 2007, 3). In addition, charter schools can impact the traditional school district in a positive way by reducing the need for districts to hire new teachers by eliminating overcrowding, which reduces the average cost of hiring and training a new teacher, estimated to be about $8,000 per teacher (The National Alliance for Charter Schools 2008).

The impact of charter schools in the community’s economic and social growth is rapidly increasing. As stated earlier, charter schools do not receive funding for facilities from the state, however the districts that have charters schools receive and excess of approximately $1,500 per student that attends a charter school.  Therefore, without the funding for a facility, charter schools renovate, remodel and/or rehabilitate existing property within a community in order to accommodate students. Having a charter school residing in a neighborhood has the potential to generate tax revenue and increase the value of real estate (National Alliance for Public Charter Schools 2008).

The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools also suggests that if charter schools are successful in educating students, it can reduce the dropout rate in high schools and increase college admissions and graduates. Texas seems to have a high dropout rate, and those students who graduate do not have the communication and math skills necessary for college and require remedial math and reading programs to qualify for admission to college (Terry and Alexander 2008, 4). One of the most successful schools in Texas is a charter school that reduced their dropout rates dramatically under the direction of the mission of their charter.

These charter schools often provide a safe haven for youth by providing aftercare and tutoring. Importantly, charter schools often give communities a sense of pride. Many charter schools offer Boy Scouts of America, sports, and other programs in order to facilitate teambuilding, self esteem, and help foster a sense of community, and growth in a child. Some charter schools open their doors for tutoring and mentoring on Saturdays to offer extra assistance as well as a safe setting for young learners. However, these programs are uncommon in the traditional public school district setting mostly because of the contract and collective bargaining processes of the districts. Charter schools have the ability to add the extra touches that impact students without the political constraints that traditional district schools face.

While charter schools do not seem like they would pose a significant threat to the financial operations of the public school system in Texas, there are some risks associated with the existence of charter schools. Because most charter schools operate like a business, there is a risk of misappropriation and improper allocation of funds. In addition, misconduct of administrators, teachers, and entities involved with a particular charter school could lead to a negative reputation of charter schools as a whole. However, limiting the number of charter schools based on isolated incidents of illegal activity, inappropriate behavior or misuse of power could prove to be harmful to the education system. Misconduct can develop in any entity, including public school districts.

Research shows that students from a traditional public school who attend charter schools for a period of two or three years improve more rapidly than students in the traditional public school district (Terry and Alexander 2008, 5). Not using a growth based system to measure the amount of growth, a student is able to obtain in the course of a year in the state accountability system is causing charter school to seem deficient (Terry and Alexander 2008, 5). Research from the “Texas Charter Schools: An Assessment in 2005” produced by the Texas Public Policy Foundation, shows that students who left traditional public schools to attend charter schools performed better on average than they would have if they were still attending the traditional public school (Patterson 2004, 32). Thus, the correlation of charter schools and student achievement is significant, and students will benefit from the removal of the charter school cap in Texas.

Charter schools provide competition with the mainstream district schools which provides an unwanted positive impact on the district schools. It forces district schools to exhibit more accountability of staff and teachers and puts pressure on them to increase student performance. If the schools are functioning at low levels, parents or guardians will feel the need to remove their child from the district school by applying to a charter school. If lawmakers remove the cap and more options are available to parents and guardians, more choices for education will be accessible to students and parents. In addition, the competition between charter schools and public schools will cause school districts to increase their overall academic performance.

Patterson asserts the bottom line for charter schools in Texas as follows:

Charter schools are a valuable alternative to traditional public schools (Patterson 2005, 1).

Charters are especially effective with disadvantaged students (Patterson 2005, 1).

Charters challenge traditional public schools to improve student performance (Patterson 2005, 1).

Charters do a better job with high school students and alternative education programs (Patterson 2005, 1).

Conclusion:

The benefits a charter school can provide to the district public schools, parents, students, and the community significantly outweighs any negative impact charters may cause. The Texas legislature should eliminate the cap of 215 charter schools which prevents charter schools to operate in a free market (Terry and Alexander, 2008, 1). The 16,810 or more students on the waiting lists for charter schools prove the demand for charter schools. This demand, viewed in light of the current issues facing traditional public schools, proves that charter schools are working well in improving the quality of education. Many education analysts believe that the quality of a charter school education will increase overtime. Unless this demand meets the supply, tens of thousands of students will remain in an environment that may not promote academic, emotional or social growth. Equally important, these students will not thrive in their current placement and could regress to the extent of becoming an at-risk youth who could potentially drop out of high school, leading to a grim future. This proposed reform of lifting the cap could be an immense opportunity for Texas to become a leader in the charter school movement. The Texas public school system could stop the increase of real estate taxes to invest money in failing districts and make the choice to provide additional educational resources for the children of the state.

            The bureaucracy that places a barrier to student learning and student performance is unconscionable. A simple solution to the education crisis Texas is facing would be to lift the cap while continuing to monitor all educational institutions. It is in the best interests of the child to allow parents and guardians to make the choice of where their child should attend school to get the best free, appropriate public education possible. The main purpose of the charter school legislation in 1995 was to give that choice to Texas citizens. That freedom no longer exists for thousands of citizens in Texas because of the cap on charter schools. Given the overwhelming evidence that charter schools are socioeconomically beneficial, lawmakers in Texas should increase or remove the cap altogether and make charter schools available to all of its citizens in 2009.

Top 12 Pioneers in Education

You don’t need to venture into the Old West or shutte into space to be a pioneer.  These Top 12 pioneers in education have explored much rougher terrain to shape modern learning.

Horace Mann (1796-1859) Pioneer of American Public School Education
Horace Mann grew up in a time when education was not easily obtained for those that lived in the poor rural areas of America.  Though his own early education was limited, he attended Browns University, studied law, and later enjoyed a highly successful political career.  It was during his time serving as a representative and senator in the legislature of Massachusetts and lastly Secretary of the Massachusetts Board of Education that he used his influence to advance change in the American educational system.  We can thank Horace Mann for teacher training colleges, free libraries, and free public education to all children through taxation.

Freidrich Froebel (1782-1852) Pioneer of Early Childhood Education
Freidrich Froebel was a German educator whose philosophy of education influenced such people as Horace Mann and Maria Montessori.  Based on the belief that a young child possessed innate qualities that would unfold gradually within a natural setting, he established kindergartens where free expression, creativity, social interaction, motor activity and learning by doing were the focus.  Many of these same tenets can be found in our contemporary early childhood programs.

Charlotte Mason (1842-1923) Pioneer of Home Education
A citizen of Britain, Charlotte Mason’s dream was that all children, no matter what social class, should have the opportunity to obtain a liberal arts education.   She was dedicated to improving the way in which children were educated.  Seeing the importance of educating parents in areas of discipline and the training of children, she began the Parents’ Education Union.  It was her belief that children learn best through “living books” rather than dry textbooks and through real experiences.  Her methods included an emphasis on the enjoyment of the arts and the study of great artists and musicians.  Many of her educational practices were well suited to home education and her methods have become the foundation of many homeschooling families.

Jean Piaget (1896-1980) Pioneer of How Children Learn
Anyone who has taken a child psychology class will have studied the developmental and learning theories of Jean Piaget, the Swedish psychologist. Fascinated with how children reasoned, he began researching and writing books on the subject of child psychology.  When he later married and fathered three children, he was supplied with enough data to write three more books!  His research and subsequent theories have become the basis and foundation of our understanding of normal child development.

Margaret Bancroft (1854-1912) Pioneer of Special Education
Bancroft’s intelligence, imagination, and dedication to her students set her apart as an extraordinary educator.  At the age of 25, she embarked on a courageous and lonely endeavor by opening the first private boarding school in Haddonfield, New Jersey, for children with developmental delays.  She believed that disabled children needed special schools, adapted material, and well trained teachers rather than to be sent to institutions.  Bancroft’s students responded to her love and patience and individually-tailored instruction.  Under her influence, the medical profession began to awaken to their responsibility to help correct defects and disabilities in children.  Admirers of her skill came to train and later became leaders in the field of special education.

Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) Pioneer of Education for African-Americans
Born into slavery and later freed, Washington knew first hand the difference an education can make in a person’s life.  As a young man, Washington was appointed to head the Tuskegee Institute now called Tuskegee University, which was originally a teacher’s training college for African-Americans.  He was leader of the college from its infancy to the time of his death.  He became a dominant and influential figure among politicians and the general public and did much to pave the way for later civil rights and desegregation of public education.  It was his belief that education was the African-American community’s best chance for social equality and a better future.

John Dewey (1859-1952) Pioneer of Progressive Education
It was while he was a professor of philosophy and the head of the Chicago University’s teacher college, that Dewey exerted his greatest influence in education and promoted many educational reforms through his experimental schools.  It was his view that children should be encouraged to develop “free personalities” and that they should be taught how to think and to make judgments rather than to simply have their heads filled with knowledge.  He also believed that schools were places where children should learn to live cooperatively. A member of the first teacher’s union, he was concerned for teacher’s rights and their academic freedom.

Maria Montessori (1870-1952) Pioneer of Individualized Education

Montessori methods remain the popular choice for many parents who seek an alternative education for their children, especially for the early childhood through the primary years. Before she took an interest in education, Montessori was the first woman in Italy to obtain the training to become a doctor.  She was assigned the post of medical care to the patients of a mental institution and it was there that she encountered “backward” children igniting her passion for education.  Beginning with a daycare facility in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Rome, Montessori put her theories into practice. Her methods were influenced by her previous training in medicine, education, andanthropology.   The results were extraordinary and soon drew much attention from many parts of the world, including America.  The rest, as they say, is history.

John Holt (1923-1985) Pioneer and Advocate for Home Education
Talk about going full circle.  Whereas Horace Mann fought for the free public education of all children, Holt raised awareness of the need for reform in America’s public schools.  As an educator, he became convinced that the present system stifled the learning of most children mainly because of fear.  Disillusioned by the inability to bring reform and improvement to public schools, Holt left teaching and devoted his time to the promotion of his ideas.   He believed that children learn best when allowed to follow their own interests rather than having learning imposed upon them. His exposure to proponents of home education lead him to later conclude that the best place to set up a natural environment for learning was within a child’s home.  His books had a profound impact on the growth of the home schooling sector.

Marie Clay (1926-2007) Pioneer of Balanced Literacy Model and Reading Recovery
Born in Wellington, New Zealand, Marie Clay became an international leader in the study of children’s acquisition of literacy.  Her methods of teaching reading and written language have swept through the United States and other English speaking nations since their inception three decades ago.  The reading recovery component was developed as a means of lifting the low achieving first grader to a place alongside the average learner.  The structure of the program calls for close observation of the student by the teacher to design lessons that constantly build on what a child already knows and taking them to the next level.  Children are surrounded by a language rich environment and encouraged to choose reading books that align with their personal interests.

Jerome Bruner (1915-)  Pioneer of Discovery Learning Theory
To combat the behaviorist approach to education, Bruner developed cognitive psychology and promoted a constructivist approach.  His discovery learning theory is based on the assumption that children learn and remember better what they discover for themselves and that they are better able to remember new information if they connect it to something that they already know. His research and subsequent theories on child development closely aligns with the work of Jean Piaget.

Howard Gardner (1943-)  Pioneer of Multiple Intelligences Theory
Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences has redefined educators’ views of how students learn and should be assessed. Historically, intelligence has been measured through the ability to problem solve and to demonstrate cognitive ability through various controlled verbal and performance type tasks.   Gardner’s theory broadens the field of how individuals display their intelligence by including linguistic, logical-mathematical, musical, bodily-kinesthetic, special, interpersonal, and intrapersonal intelligences.  Through his influence there has been a greater emphasis placed on performance testing and educators have become more conscious of the need for diversification of instructional strategies to match the learning styles and strengths of students.

Quality Public Education

In 2004 Forbes magazine ranked Raleigh, North Carolina’s Wake County Public School System ( WCPSS ), third in the nation for “Best Education in the Biggest Cities”.

It’s no wonder, as Greater Raleigh is able to provide superior education opportunities in both public and private settings. WCPSS is a national leader on the education front. The school system boasts a solid high school graduation rate, great access to educational resources, and affordability in housing. All these factors, combined with it’s amazing programming make for an undeniably strong school system.

If you are moving to the Greater Raleigh area and want to know about specific WCPSS programming, read on:

K-12: The Formative Years

Committed to excellence, The Board of Education has adopted an ambitious goal. They aim to have 95 percent of WCPSS students in grades three through 12, at or above grade level by the end of this year! Such ambitious goals are indicative of a forward thinking and committed board, who are dedicated to providing the best education and ensuring that positive growth continues.

Parents in this area have a wide variety of educational options. There are many traditionalpublic schools and also numerous private and special-needs schools. WCPSS offers over 20 programs in the district with 51 magnet schools. The award winning magnet school program provides creative approaches for teachers to reach students and to meet different student’s individual learning styles and needs. Magnet schools in the area, have been especially recognized with awards such as the United States Magnet School of Excellence of award and the Magnet School of Distinction award.

Recently the district received a portion of a 2.3 million dollar grant to open a health and life science themed high school aimed at developing students for both higher education and jobs in biotechnology and health care. Students at these schools will have the opportunity to participate in internship programs and will have access to community college and university level courses. There’s other grant funding in place which comes from the New Schools Project, an 11 million dollar grant that will create more than 100 new and redesigned high schools across the state.

Post- Secondary: Superior Education at Your Doorstep!

North Carolina State University, as one of the nation’s top research universities, is a great example of one the best post secondary options in Raleigh. Home to BTEC, The Golden LEAF Biomanfacturing Training and Education Center, this University is committed to providing a highly trained, industry-focused workforce. Dedicated to pursue “innovation in action”, NCSU partner’s with business’s, industry and government with a focus to collectively create innovative products and research.

The region’s community colleges also offer solid programs for those wishing to pursue technical, or specialized training in particular sectors of the workforce.

North Carolina community college is focused on biotechnology training to provide a highly trained workforce for the estimated 125,000 residents of NC who will be employed in this sector by 2025.

Wake Technical Community College is a leader in biological and chemical technology programs. They also offer North Carolina’s only community college lab facility for industrial pharmaceutical technology. As a state leader providing over 20% of all industry training offered by community colleges in the state, Wake Tech serves as a catalyst for economic growth and development. This exceptional community college assists thousands of businesses with its superior Small Business Center and New and Expanding Industry Program.

It is easy to see why Raleigh, North Carolina boasts one of America’s most educated workforces. If education is important to you and your family, consider Raleigh, North Carolina as a smart option for a solid future.

Special Education, Public School Law & Educational Laws and Policies, Dr. William Allan Kritsonis

William Alan Kritsonis, PhD

Professor

Public School Law & Educational Laws and Policies

FAPE

INTRODUCTION

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is the law that provides your child with the right to a free, appropriate public education (FAPE). The purpose of the IDEA is “to ensure that all children with disabilities have available to them a free appropriate public education that emphasizes special education and related services designed to meet their unique needs and prepare them for further education, employment, and independent living…” 20 U.S.C. 1400(d) (Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition, page 20). The Board of Education v. Rowley case is significant because it established the principle that school districts are not required to maximize the potential of a child but provide some educational benefit to the child and how courts would examine future disputes under IDEA (Walsh, Kemerer, and Maniotis, 2005).

Case One

United States Supreme Court

BOARD OF EDUCATION OF THE HENDRICK HUDSON CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT, WESTCHESTER COUNTY,

v.

AMY ROWLEY, by her parents, ROWLEY et al.

No. 80 – 1002

LITIGANTS

Plaintiffs – Petitioners: Board of Education of the Hendrick Hudson Central School District, Westchester County, et al.

Defendant – Respondent: Amy Rowley, by her parents, Rowley, et., al.

BACKGROUND

The Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975 (IDEA), provides federal money to assist state and local agencies in educating handicapped children, and federally fund States in compliance with extensive goals and procedures. The Act represents an ambitious federal effort to promote the education of handicapped children, and was passed in response to Congress’ perception that a majority of handicapped in the United States “were either totally excluded from schools or [were] sitting idly in regular classrooms awaiting the time when they were old enough to ‘drop out.'” The Acts evolution and major provisions shed light on the question of statutory interpretation which is at the heart of this case.

Congress first addressed the problem of education the handicapped in 1966 when it amended the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 to establish a grant program “for the purpose of assisting the States in the initiation, expansion, and improvement of programs and projects for the education of handicapped children. That program was repealed in 1970 by the Education for the Handicapped Act, Pub. L. No. 91-230, 84 Star, 175, Part B of which established a grant program similar in purpose to the repealed legislation. Neither the 1966 nor 1970 legislation contained specific guidelines for state use of the grant money; both were aimed primarily at stimulating the States to develop educational resources and to train personnel for educating the handicapped.

Dissatisfied with the progress being made under these earlier enactments, and spurred by two district court decisions holding that handicapped children should be given access to a public education, Congress in 1974 greatly increased federal funding for education of the handicapped and for the first time required recipient States to adopt “a goal of providing full educational opportunities to all handicapped children.” Pub. L. 93-380, 88 Stat. 579, 583 (1974) (the 1974 statue). The 1974 statute was recognized as an interim measure only, adopted “in order to give the Congress an additional year in which to study what if any additional Federal assistance [was] required to enable the States to meet the needs of handicapped children.” H.R. Rep. No. 94-332, supra, p.4. The ensuing year of study produced the Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975.

In order to qualify for federal financial assistance under the Act, a State must demonstrate that it “has in effect a policy that assures all handicapped children the right to a free appropriate public education.” 20 U.S.C. 1412(1). The “free appropriate public education” required by the Act is tailored to the unique needs of the handicapped child by means of an ‘individualized educational program” (IEP). In addition to the state plan and the IEP already described, the Act imposes extensive procedural requirements upon State receiving federal funds under its provisions. Parents or guardians of handicapped children must be notified of any proposed change in “the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of the child or the provision of a free appropriate public education to the child,” and must be permitted to being a complaint about “any matter relating to” such evaluation and education. 1415(b)(1)(D) and (E).6 Complaints brought by parents or guardians must be resolved at “an impartial due process hearing,” and appeal to the State educational agency must be provided if the initial hearing is held at the local or regional level. Thus, although the Act leaves to the States the primary responsibility for developing and executing educational programs for handicapped children, it imposes significant requirements to be followed in the discharge of that responsibility. Compliance is assured by provisions permitting the withholding of federal funds upon determination that a participating state or local agency has failed to satisfy the requirements of the Act, 1414(b)(A), 1416, and by the provision for judicial review. At present, all States except New Mexico receive federal funds under the portions of the Act at issue today.

FACTS

Amy Rowley is a deaf student in New York.  Amy has minimal residual hearing and is an excellent lipreader.  During the year before she started attending Furnace Woods School, Amy’s parents and school administrators met and decided to place her in a regular kindergarten classroom to determine what supplemental services would be necessary to her education.  Several members of the administration took a course in sign-language interpretation, and a teletype machine was installed in the principal’s office to facilitate communication with her parents who are also deaf.  After Amy was placed temporarily in the regular classroom, it was determined that she should stay in that class, but be provided with an FM hearing aid to amplify words.  Amy successfully finished her kindergarten year.

Before Amy entered first grade, an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) was prepared, which provided that Amy should continue to receive her education in the regular classroom and use the FM hearing aid, she should also receive instruction from a tutor for the deaf for one hour each day and from a speech therapist for three hours each week.  The Rowleys agreed with parts of this plan, but insisted that Amy also be provided a qualified sign-language interpreter in all of her academic classes instead of the assistance proposed in other parts of the IEP.

An interpreter had been placed in Amy’s kindergarten class for a 2-week experimental period, but the interpreter had reported that Amy did not need his services at that time.  The same conclusion was reached by the school for Amy’s first grade year.  An independent examiner also agreed with the administrators’ determination that an interpreter was not necessary because Amy was achieving educationally, academically, and socially without such assistance.  Amy performs better than the average child in her class and is advancing easily from grade to grade.  However, she understands less of what goes on in the class than she could if she were not deaf and so she is not learning as much, or performing as well academically, as she would without her handicap.

DECISION

The Court stated that a “free appropriate public education” is one which consists of educational instruction specially designed to meet the unique needs of the handicapped child, supported by such services as are necessary to permit the child “to benefit” from the instruction.  If personalized instruction is being provided with sufficient supportive services to allow the child to benefit from the instruction, and the other items on the definitional checklist are satisfied, the child is receiving a “free public education.”  Absent in the statute is any substantive standard prescribing the level of education to be accorded handicapped children.

“By passing the Act, Congress sought primarily to make public education available to handicapped children.  But in seeking to provide such access to public education, Congress did not impose upon the States any greater substantive educational standard than would be necessary to make such access meaningful.”  Board of Education v. Rowley, 458 U.S. 176 at 192.  The Court says the intent of the act was more to open the

Higgins, Green, Reece

door of pubic education than to guarantee the level of education once inside.  The Court further states that whatever Congress meant by an “appropriate” education, it did not mean a potential-maximizing education.  It did not mean the State had to provide specialized services to maximize each child’s potential “commensurate with the opportunity provided other children.”  The basic floor of opportunity provided by the Act is access to specialized instruction and related services which are individually designed to provide educational benefit to the handicapped child.

DICTA

Implicit in the congressional purpose of providing access to a “free appropriate public education” is the requirement that the education to which access is provided be sufficient to confer some educational benefit upon the handicapped child. It would do little good for Congress to spend millions of dollars in providing access to public education only to have the handicapped child receive no benefit from that education. The statutory definition of “free appropriate public education,” in addition to requiring that States provide each child with “specially designed instruction,” expressly requires the provision of “such . . . supportive services . . . as may be required to assist a handicapped child to benefit from special education.” 1401(17) (emphasis added). We therefore conclude that the “basic floor of opportunity” provided by the Act consists of access to specialized instruction and related services which are individually designed to provide educational benefit to the handicapped child.

IMPLICATIONS

The determination of when handicapped children are receiving sufficient educational benefits to satisfy the requirements of the Act presents a more difficult problem. The Act requires participating States to educate a wide spectrum of handicapped children, from the marginally hearing-impaired to the profoundly retarded palsied. It is clear that the benefits obtainable by children at one end of the spectrum will differ dramatically form those obtainable by children at the other end, with infinite variations in between. One child may have little difficulty competing successfully in an academic setting with nonhandicapped children while another child may encounter great difficulty in acquiring even the most basic of self-maintenance skills. We do not attempt today to establish any one test for determining the adequacy of educational benefits conferred upon all children covered by the Act. Because in this case we are presented with a handicapped child who is receiving substantial specialized instruction and related services, and who is performing above average in the regular classrooms of a public school system, we confine our analysis to the situation.

PUBLICE SCHOOL LAW

William Allan Kritsonis, PhD

 

LEAST RESTRICTIVE ENVIRONMENT

INTRODUCTION

An important provision of Public Law 94-142 (IDEA) is that all handicapped students be educated in the least restrictive environment (LRE) (Heron & Skinner, 1981).  Federal law expresses a strong preference for placing the child with disabilities in the setting in which that child would be served if there were no disability (Walsh, Kemerer, and Maniotis, 2005). However, these requirements continue to generate complex and interesting questions from the field. In particular, this report focuses on questions that have been raised about the relationship of IDEA’s LRE requirements to “inclusion.”  If the goal of IDEA is to mainstream students with disabilities, despite efforts made from administrators, specialists, and staff, how can this be achievable if the child has not made academic progress in the regular classroom?

Case One

United States Court of Appeals,

Fourth Circuit.

950 F.2d. 156

18 IDELR 350

Shannon CARTER, a minor, by and through her father, and next friend, Emory D. Carter, et al., Plaintiffs-Appellee,

v.

FLORENCE COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT FOUR: Ernest K. NICHOLSON, Superintendent, in his official capacity; SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS; Bennie ANDERSON, Chairman; Monroe FRIDAY, Jack ODOM; Elrita BACOTE; T.R. GREEN; James W. HICKS, in their official capacity

No. 91 – 1047

LITIGANTS

Plaintiffs – Appellees:    Mark Hartmann, et al.

Defendant – Appellant: Florence County School District Four, et., al.

BACKGROUND

Mark Hartmann is an eleven year old child with autism.  Autism is a developmental disorder characterized by significant deficiencies in communication skills, social interaction, and motor control.  Mark is not able to speak and has severed problems with fine motor coordination.  Mark’s ability to write is limited.  He types on a keyboard but can only consistently type a few words such as “is” and “at”.  Mark has had episodes of

 

Loud screeching and other disruptive conduct; including, hitting, pinching, kicking, biting, and removing his clothing.  The school district proposed removing Mark from the regular classroom and place him in a class structured for children with autism.  However, he would be integrated for art, music, physical education, library, and recess.  Mark would be allowed to rejoin the regular education setting as he demonstrated an improved ability to handle it.  The Hartmanns refused to approve the IEP, claiming that it failed to comply with the mainstreaming provision of the IDEA, which states that “to the maximum extent appropriate,” disabled children should be educated with children who are not handicapped. 20 U.S.C. § 1412(5)(B). The county initiated due process proceedings, 20 U.S.C. § 1415(b), and on December 14, 1994, the local hearing officer upheld the May 1994 IEP. She found that Mark’s behavior was disruptive and that despite the “enthusiastic” efforts of the county, he had obtained no academic benefit from the regular education classroom. On May 3, 1995, the state review officer affirmed the decision, adopting both the hearing officer’s findings and her legal analysis. The Hartmanns then challenged the hearing officer’s decision in federal court.

While the administrative process continued, Mark entered third grade in the regular education classroom at Ashburn. In December of that year, the Hartmanns withdrew Mark from Ashburn. Mark and his mother moved to Montgomery County, Virginia, to permit the Hartmanns to enroll Mark in public school there. Mark was placed in the regular third-grade classroom for the remainder of that year as well as the next.

The district court reversed the hearing officer’s decision. The court rejected the administrative findings and concluded that Mark could receive significant educational benefit in a regular classroom and that “the Board simply did not take enough appropriate steps to try to include Mark in a regular class.” The court made little of the testimony of Mark’s Loudoun County instructors, and instead relied heavily on its reading of Mark’s experience in Illinois and Montgomery County. While the hearing officer had addressed Mark’s conduct in detail, the court stated that “given the strong presumption for inclusion under the IDEA, disruptive behavior should not be a significant factor in determining the appropriate educational placement for a disabled child.”

FACTS

Mark spent his pre-school years in various programs for disabled children. In kindergarten, he spent half his time in a self-contained program for autistic children and half in a regular education classroom at Butterfield Elementary in Lombard, Illinois. Upon entering first grade, Mark received speech and occupational therapy one-on-one, but was otherwise included in the regular classroom at Butterfield full-time with an aide to assist him.

After Mark’s first-grade year, the Hartmanns moved to Loudoun County, Virginia, where they enrolled Mark at Ashburn Elementary for the 1993-1994 school year. Based on Mark’s individualized education program (IEP) from Illinois, the school placed Mark in a regular education classroom. To facilitate Mark’s inclusion, Loudoun officials carefully selected his teacher, hired a full-time aide to assist him, and put him in a smaller class with more independent children. Mark’s teacher, Diane Johnson, read extensively about

 

  1. autism, and both Johnson and Mark’s aide, Suz Leitner, received training in facilitated communication, a special communication technique used with autistic children. Mark received five hours per week of speech and language therapy with a qualified specialist,   Carolyn Clement. Halfway through the year, Virginia McCullough, a special education teacher, was assigned to provide Mark with three hours of instruction a week and to advise Mark’s teacher and aide.

Mary Kearney, the Loudoun County Director of Special Education, personally worked with Mark’s IEP team, which consisted of Johnson, Leitner, Clement, and Laurie McDonald, the principal of Ashburn. Kearney provided in-service training for the Ashburn staff on autism and inclusion of disabled children in the regular classroom. Johnson, Leitner, Clement, and McDonald also attended a seminar on inclusion held by the Virginia Council for Administrators of Special Education. Mark’s IEP team also received assistance from educational consultants Jamie Ruppmann and Gail Mayfield, and Johnson conferred with additional specialists whose names were provided to her by the Hartmanns and the school. Mark’s curriculum was continually modified to ensure that it was properly adapted to his needs and abilities.

Frank Johnson, supervisor of the county’s program for autistic children, formally joined the IEP team in January, but provided assistance throughout the year in managing Mark’s behavior. Mark engaged in daily episodes of loud screeching and other disruptive conduct such as hitting, pinching, kicking, biting, and removing his clothing. These outbursts not only required Diane Johnson and Leitner to calm Mark and redirect him, but also consumed the additional time necessary to get the rest of the children back on task after the distraction.

Despite these efforts, by the end of the year Mark’s IEP team concluded that he was making no academic progress in the regular classroom. In Mark’s May 1994 IEP, the team therefore proposed to place Mark in a class specifically structured for autistic children at Leesburg Elementary. Leesburg is a regular elementary school which houses the autism class in order to facilitate interaction between the autistic children and students who are not handicapped. The Leesburg class would have included five autistic students working with a special education teacher and at least one full-time aide. Under the May IEP, Mark would have received only academic instruction and speech in the self-contained classroom, while joining a regular class for art, music, physical education, library, and recess. The Leesburg program also would have permitted Mark to increase the portion of his instruction received in a regular education setting as he demonstrated an improved ability to handle it.

DECISION

To demand more than this from regular education personnel would essentially require them to become special education teachers trained in the full panoply of disabilities that their students might have. Virginia law does not require this, nor does the IDEA. First, such a requirement would fall afoul of Rowley’s admonition that the IDEA does not guarantee the ideal educational opportunity for every disabled child. Furthermore, when the IDEA was passed, Congress’ intention was not that the Act displace the primacy of

States in the field of education, but that States receive funds to assist them in extending their educational systems to the handicapped.” Rowley, 458 U.S. at 208. The IDEA “expressly incorporates State educational standards.” Schimmel v. Spillane, 819 F.2d 477, 484 (4th Cir. 1987). We can think of few steps that would do more to usurp state educational standards and policy than to have federal courts re-write state teaching certification requirements in the guise of applying the IDEA.  In sum, we conclude that Loudoun County’s efforts on behalf of Mark were sufficient to satisfy the IDEA’s mainstreaming directive.

DICTA

The IDEA embodies important principles governing the relationship between local school authorities and a reviewing district court. Although section 1415(e)(2) provides district courts with authority to grant “appropriate” relief based on a preponderance of the evidence, 20 U.S.C. § 1415(e)(2), that section “is by no means an invitation to the courts to substitute their own notions of sound educational policy for those of the school authorities which they review.” Board of Education of Hendrick Hudson Central Sch. Dist. v. Rowley, 458 U.S. 176, 206 (1982).  These principles reflect the IDEA’s recognition that federal courts cannot run local schools. Local educators deserve latitude in determining the individualized education program most appropriate for a disabled child. The IDEA does not deprive these educators of the right to apply their professional judgment. Rather it establishes a “basic floor of opportunity” for every handicapped child. Rowley, 458 U.S. at 201. States must provide specialized instruction and related services “sufficient to confer some educational benefit upon the handicapped child,” id. at 200, but the Act does not require “the furnishing of every special service necessary to maximize each handicapped child’s potential,” id. at 199.

IMPLICATIONS

The IDEA encourages mainstreaming, but only to the extent that it does not prevent a child from receiving educational benefit. The evidence in this case demonstrates that Mark Hartmann was not making academic progress in a regular education classroom despite the provision of adequate supplementary aids and services. Loudoun County properly proposed to place Mark in a partially mainstreamed program which would have addressed the academic deficiencies of his full inclusion program while permitting him to interact with nonhandicapped students to the greatest extent possible. This professional judgment by local educators was deserving of respect. The approval of this educational approach by the local and state administrative officers likewise deserved a deference from the district court which it failed to receive. In rejecting reasonable pedagogical choices and disregarding well-supported administrative findings, the district court assumed an educational mantle which the IDEA did not confer. Accordingly, the judgment must be reversed, and the case remanded with directions to dismiss it.

William Allan Kritsonis, PhD

SPECIAL EDUCATION

SPECIAL EDUCATION

INTRODUCTION

“Appropriate” education is one that goes beyond the normal school year. If a child will experience severe or substantial regression during the summer months in the absence of a summer program, the handicapped child may be entitled to year round services. The Education for All Handicapped Children Act (EAHCA) passed in 1975, this act provided support to state special education programs to provide free appropriate public education to disabled children. National precedent establishing the tests for determining the need for an extended school year for special needs children.

            For the purpose of this case we will determine if there is sufficient enough evidence of regression to justify requiring the district to provide summer services to the student.

Case One

United States Court of Appeals,

Fifth Circuit

Alamo Heights Independent School District-Plaintiff-Appellants

v.

State Board Of Education, et al., Defendants-Apelles

790 F .d 1153

LITIGANTS

Plaintiff –Appellant: Alamo Heights Independent School District

Defendants – Apelles: State Board of Education

Background

In the summer  1979, when Steven was seven, his mother moved into the Alamo Heights Independent School District. That school year Steven attended a special education program at Cambridge Elementary School. In the late spring of 1980, Mrs. G.

requested that the Alamo Heights Independent School District provide summer services for Steven.

For seven years prior to 1980 the Alamo Heights School District had offered a summer program to all special education students who were moderately or severely handicapped. The decision to offer the program was made on the administrative level, as a matter of district policy, and any moderate to severely handicapped child was eligible to

attend. In the summer of 1980, when Steven would have been eligible for this program, however, the School District changed its policy and offered only a half-day one-month program, without providing transportation. The decision to curtail the summer program was based on its cost and the apparent lack of interest on the part of teachers and eligible students in previous years.

No students from Steven’s multiply handicapped class took advantage of the 1980 summer program, nor did Steven. It is not clear, however, whether Mrs. G. was not told of the program or whether the lack of transportation and the hours made it impossible for Steven to attend. During that summer, Steven stayed with a baby-sitter who had no training in special education. There was testimony that Steven’s behavior deteriorated that summer and that he suffered regression in his ability to stand, point, and feed himself.

The next year Mrs. G.’s request for summer services and transportation was refused by school officials, without consultation with Steven’s Admission, Review and Dismissal (ARD) Committee or with his teacher. The only caretaker Mrs. G. could find for Steven lived a mile outside of the district boundary, and even during the school year, the School District would not provide out-of-district transportation.

Mrs. G. then employed legal counsel and appealed the denial of services to the Texas Education Agency. The administrative hearing officer issued an interim order requesting a meeting of Steven’s ARD Committee to consider the issue of summer services. The ARD Committee met and agreed only to provide some adaptive equipment for Steven and to request consultative services from the state during the summer of 1981. On August 21, 1981, the hearing officer issued a “proposal for decision” in which he found that the School District was required to provide summer services and related

transportation services during 1981, and also required the School District to make a decision regarding summer services for 1982 by March of 1982.

Facts

Without some kind of continuous, structured educational program during the evidence to conclude that Steven G. would definitely suffer severe regression after a summer without such a program, neither can it conclude that he would not and there is evidence that shows that Steven G. has suffered more than the loss of skills in isolated instances, and that he has required recoupment time of more than several weeks after summers without continuous, structured programming. A summer without continuous, structured programming would result in substantial regression of knowledge gained and skills learned, and, given the severity of Steven G.’s handicaps, this regression would be significant.

Decision

Mrs. G.’s efforts to obtain the appropriate provision of free educational services for her son were pursued within the administrative framework set up by the State of Texas pursuant to EAHCA guidelines. The success she achieved in requiring the School District to provide Steven with an appropriate individualized educational placement, including summer services, was obtained through and within the “elaborate, precisely

defined administrative and judicial enforcement system. Because we find that, whether or  denominated due process, the claims upon which Mrs. G. has prevailed are rights granted by the EAHCA, and because the EAHCA contains no provision for attorney’s fees, we agree with the district court that no attorney’s fees are to be awarded under Sec. 1988.

We also find that Mrs. G. is not entitled to attorney’s fees under the Rehabilitation Act. In Smith, the Court stated, “Of course, if a State provided services beyond those required by the [EAHCA], but discriminatorily denied those services to a handicapped child, Section 504 [of the Rehabilitation Act] would remain available as an avenue of relief.”

Mrs. G. asserts that the fact that the School District provided a summer remedial reading program, free of charge, to nonhandicapped children without providing an

analogous free summer program to handicapped children is a clear instance of discrimination on the basis of handicap in violation of Sec. 504.

We do not agree. Under the EAHCA, the School District is required to provide handicapped children with a free, appropriate education geared towards their individual needs. If a handicapped child’s IEP requires summer services under the EAHCA, he is entitled to summer services. The fact that the School District affords some nonhandicapped children remedial help during the summer does not mean that it is required to offer similar remedial summer guidance to handicapped children, irrespective of whether their individual IEP’s provide for structured summer services. The school district’s action in Steven’s case has not been shown to constitute discrimination on the basis of his handicap distinct from the protection afforded under the EAHCA. Hence, Mrs. G. is not entitled to attorney’s fees under 29 U.S.C. Sec. 794a(b), the attorney’s fees provision of the Rehabilitation Act.

Finally, the School District argues that it was denied due process by the procedures employed by the State Board of Education during the administrative stage of this action. It contends that under Helms v. McDaniel, the hearing officer’s initial proposed decision of August 24, 1981 should have been considered the final decision of the case and that the hearing officer’s later adoption of the Commissioner of Education’s decision was a direct violation of Helms. It contends that the failure of the hearing officer to adopt his initial proposed decision as the final decision of the case denied them due process. The School District does not favor us with any authority for the proposition that an adjudicative officer is prohibited by the due process clause from changing his opinion in the course of an orderly procedure. We find the district court did not err in dismissing the School District’s due process claims against the state defendants.

Dicta

The district court carefully phrased its conclusion and, while it did not explicitly state that the educational program offered by the School District did not meet the “some

educational benefit” standard of Rowley, the district court showed that it was aware of that decision and its judgment is therefore tantamount to such a conclusion. Hence, we

hold that the district court applied the appropriate standard to the factual determinations supported by the record. The general injunctive relief granted by the court was

appropriate to ensure that Steven receives the summer programming to which he is entitled under the Act.

With respect to out-of-district transportation for Steven G., the district court found that transportation is included in the definition of “related service” under 20 U.S.C. Sec. 1401(a)(17) and that such transportation does not cease to be a related service simply because a parent requests transportation to a site a short distance beyond the district boundaries.

Implications

The evidence indicates that Todd was receiving benefit from the TISD special education program, and hence, the TISD special education program was an appropriate placement under IDEA. Equally important, the TISD special education program provided Todd with an opportunity to interact with nondisabled peers, and was a less restrictive environment than The Oaks. Thus, regardless of whether Todd extracted any academic benefit from the educational program at The Oaks, Todd’s parents’ unilateral decision to place him there remains their financial responsibility. For these reasons, the decision of the district court is AFFIRMED.

SPECIAL EDUCATION

Professor William Allan Kritsonis, PhD Program in Educational Leadership, PVAMU, The Texas A&M University System

SPECIAL EDUCATION

INTRODUCTION

In order to assure that all children are given a meaningful opportunity to

benefit from public education, the education of children with disabilities is

required to be tailored to the unique needs of the handicapped child by means of an individualized education plan (IEP). As a condition of federal funding, IDEA requires states to provide all children with a “free appropriate public education,” with the statutory term “appropriate” designating education from which the schoolchild obtains some degree of benefit.

This report focuses on parents rights to place their son in a unilateral placement despite the public school program and IEP. The parents by law have the right to request reimbursement for private placement.

Case One

United States Courts of Appeals,

Fifth Circuit

TODD L., Mr. and Mrs. L., Defendant-Appellants,

v.
TEAGUE INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT, et al., Plaintiff-Appellee,

Docket No. No. 92-8427.

LITIGANTS

Plaintiffs-Appellant: Todd L., Mr. and Mrs. L., et.al

Defendant-Appellee: TEAGUE INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT

BACKGROUND

As a condition of federal funding, IDEA requires states to provide all children with a “free appropriate public education,” with the statutory term “appropriate” designating education from which the schoolchild obtains some degree of benefit. IDEA requires that children with disabilities be educated to the maximum extent possible with nondisabled children in the least restrictive environment consistent with their needs, a concept referred to as “mainstreaming.” In order to assure that all children are given a meaningful opportunity to benefit from public education, the education of children with disabilities is required to be tailored to the unique needs of the handicapped child by means of an individualized education plan (IEP).

Complying with IDEA, Todd’s local public school district (the Teague Independent School District, “TISD”), in collaboration with Todd and his parents, developed an IEP for Todd. Consistent with IDEA’s requirement that special education services be tailored to the unique needs of the child, the IEP emphasized one-on-one instruction in specially equipped classrooms, and reduced the length of Todd’s school day from seven hours to two hours. Todd’s school day was reduced not for the convenience of school staff, but in response to Todd’s inability to tolerate a longer school day without becoming unduly frustrated and discouraged, leading to regression rather than academic progress.

The school psychologist specifically found that a shortened school day would be necessary, at least temporarily, to assure that Todd’s inability to tolerate frustration did not lead to his giving up on academics altogether and dropping out of school. Though Todd was educated separately from his nondisabled peers for part of the school day, the school arranged for Todd to have contact with nondisabled peers. The goal of Todd’s four-year IEP was to provide him with a nonthreatening environment in which he could continue to make academic progress while gradually learning to tolerate a lengthened school day and increased stress. The record indicates that the authors of Todd’s IEP fully expected that ultimately Todd would be reintegrated into “the mainstream” of regular classes at the TISD school, and would graduate.

Facts

When Todd’s parents sought reimbursement for the costs of Todd’s institutionalization, the TISD refused on the grounds that Todd had been able to benefit from the TISD program and that The Oaks placement was more restrictive than necessary to provide Todd with educational benefit. Todd’s parents appealed to a special education

hearing officer, who found that Todd’s parents should be reimbursed. The special education hearing officer found that Todd’s parents had established that Todd’s local

public school was an inappropriate placement while The Oaks was an appropriate placement. According to the hearing officer, there was no evidence that Todd had obtained any benefit from special education at the TISD School. Contending that this factual conclusion was clearly erroneous, and that the hearing officer did not take into account the relative restrictiveness of The Oaks and the TISD School’s special education program, the school district appealed the hearing officer’s decision to federal district court.

Although the district court indicated that it gave “due weight” to the decision of the hearing officer, the district court concluded, after reviewing all the evidence from the administrative proceeding and hearing additional evidence, that the TISD public school placement was appropriate, and that The Oaks placement was inappropriate. Therefore, the district court reversed the hearing officer’s decision to grant Todd’s parents reimbursement for the cost of Todd’s institutionalization at The Oaks. Todd’s parents appeal the district court’s decision. We affirm.

Decision

Having decided that the district court did not err in subjecting the hearing officer’s decision to a searching review, it remains only to decide whether the conclusions drawn by the district court were proper. We review de novo, as a mixed question of law and fact, the district court’s decision that the local school’s IEP was appropriate and that the alternative placement was inappropriate under IDEA. Christopher M. v. Corpus Christi Independent Sch. Dist., 933 F.2d 1285, 1289 (5th Cir.1991). We review the district court’s findings of “underlying fact” for clear error. Id. See also Sherri A.D., 975 F.2d at 207. Findings of “underlying fact” include findings that the schoolchild obtained

any benefit from special education services or would be threatened by a longer school day. Christopher M., 933 F.2d at 1289.  If a parent or guardian unilaterally removes a child from the local public school system, the parent or guardian may obtain reimbursement for an alternative placement only if able to demonstrate that the regular school placement was inappropriate, and that the alternative placement was appropriate. School Comm. of Burlington v. Department of Educ., 471 U.S. 359, 373-74, 105 S.Ct. 1996, 2004, 85 L.Ed.2d 385 (1985). If Todd’s IEP in the local public school district was appropriate, then there is no need to inquire further as to the appropriateness of The Oaks’ program.

Under IDEA, an “appropriate” placement is that which enables a child to obtain “some benefit” from the public education he is receiving; not necessarily maximization of his potential. See Rowley, 458 U.S. at 198-200, 102 S.Ct. at 3047. In addition to requiring that the child’s placement be appropriate in the sense of providing some benefit, IDEA mandates that to the fullest extent possible, disabled children be educated with non-disabled children in the least restrictive environment. See 20 U.S.C. § 1412(5); Rowley, 458 U.S. at 202, 102 S.Ct. at 3048; Sherri A.D., 975 F.2d at 206 (“Even in cases in which mainstreaming is not a feasible alternative, there is a statutory preference for serving disabled individuals in the setting which is least restrictive of their liberty and which is near the community in which their families live”). A presumption exists in favor of the local public school district’s plan for educating the child, provided it comports with IDEA. See Tatro v. State of Texas, 703 F.2d 823, 830 (5th Cir.1983). See generally Rowley, 458 U.S. at 207-08, 102 S.Ct. at 3051.

There is ample evidence that Todd received significant benefit from his public school placement. Todd’s teacher and school psychologist both testified that Todd made significant progress academically and behaviorally while in the TISD special education program. Not only did Todd advance in terms of grade level, he also became steadily more able to focus on particular tasks for longer periods without experiencing debilitating frustration. At the same time, the TISD special education program provided Todd with

some opportunity to interact with nondisabled peers, and the opportunity to participate in the affairs of the community in which he lived.

Todd’s one-on-one instruction at TISD was no more restrictive than necessary to assure that he would receive some academic benefit from special education at TISD. The school psychologist testified that while she would have recommended some sort of residential placement had the district not been able to provide Todd with one-on-one

instruction, she would never consider placing a child like Todd at a residential facility as restrictive as The Oaks without first exhausting the full range of less restrictive alternatives. She testified that even though Todd had serious behavior problems, she did not consider him so unruly as to require twenty-four hour supervision in a locked unit. In the school psychologist’s opinion, The Oaks was a placement of last resort.

By contrast to the unambiguous evidence that Todd benefitted from special education at the TISD school, the evidence that Todd benefitted from educational services at The Oaks is equivocal. The evidence Todd’s parents produced to support their claim that Todd benefitted academically from educational programming at The Oaks compares Todd’s performance before he received special education services at the TISD school with Todd’s performance after he was institutionalized. Hence, it is difficult, if not impossible, to ascertain whether the source of the benefit Todd obtained was provided primarily by the TISD school, or by The Oaks. It is uncontroverted that The Oaks’ focus was on behavior management, and that The Oaks devoted only the same or a little more time to Todd’s educational programming than did the TISD school.

Finally, Todd’s placement at The Oaks involved more restrictions on Todd’s liberty than any other potential placement, removed Todd from his home community, and completely precluded him from having any contact with nondisabled peers. There is exceedingly little evidence, other than the hospital’s willingness to admit Todd, that he required such a restrictive environment. Although we can assume, based on Todd’s admission to The Oaks, that a physician

ratified Todd’s parents’ decision to hospitalize their son, the great weight of the evidence indicated that he could not only cope, but thrive, in a less restrictive setting.

Dicta

The evidence indicates that Todd was receiving benefit from the TISD special education program, and hence, the TISD special education program was an appropriate placement under IDEA. Equally important, the TISD special education program provided

Todd with an opportunity to interact with nondisabled peers, and was a less restrictive environment than The Oaks. Thus, regardless of whether Todd extracted any academic benefit from the educational program at The Oaks, Todd’s parents’ unilateral decision to place him there remains their financial responsibility. For these reasons, the decision of the district court is AFFIRMED.

Implications

The district court carefully phrased its conclusion and, while it did not explicitly state that the educational program offered by the School District did not meet the “some educational benefit” standard of Rowley, the district court showed that it was aware of that decision and its judgment is therefore tantamount to such a conclusion. Hence, we hold that the district court applied the appropriate standard to the factual determinations supported by the record. The general injunctive relief granted by the court was appropriate to ensure that Steven receives the summer programming to which he is entitled under the Act.

Dr. William Allan Kritsonis Inducted into the William H. Parker Leadership Academy Hall of Honor (HBCU)

Remarks by Angela Stevens McNeil

July 26th 2008

Good Morning. My name is Angela Stevens McNeil and I have the privilege of introducing the next Hall of Honor Inductee, Dr. William Allan Kritsonis. Dr. Kritsonis was chosen because of his dedication to the educational advancement of Prairie View A&M University students. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in 1969 from Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington.  In 1971, he earned his Master’s in Education from Seattle Pacific University.  In 1976, he earned his PhD from the University of Iowa.

Dr. Kritsonis has served and blessed the field of education as a teacher, principal, superintendent of schools, director of student teaching and field experiences, invited guest professor, author, consultant, editor-in-chief, and publisher.  He has also earned tenure as a professor at the highest academic rank at two major universities.

In 2005, Dr. Kritsonis was an Invited Visiting Lecturer at the Oxford Round Table at Oriel College in the University of Oxford, Oxford, England.  His lecture was entitled theWays of Knowing through the Realms of Meaning.

In 2004, Dr. William Allan Kritsonis was recognized as the Central Washington University Alumni Association Distinguished Alumnus for the College of Education and Professional Studies.

Dr. William Kritsonis is a well respected author of more than 500 articles in professional journals and several books.  In 1983, Dr. Kritsonis founded the NATIONAL FORUM JOURNALS. These publications represent a group of highly respected scholarly academic periodicals. In 2004, he established the DOCTORAL FORUM – National Journal forPublishing and Mentoring Doctoral Student Research. The DOCTORAL FORUM is the only refereed journal in America committed to publishing doctoral students while they are enrolled in course work in their doctoral programs. Over 300 articles have been published by doctorate and master’s degree students and most are indexed in ERIC.

Currently, Dr. Kritsonis is a Professor in the PhD Program in Educational Leadership here at Prairie View A&M University.

Dr. William Kritsonis has dedicated himself to the advancement of educational leadership and to the education of students at all levels.  It is my honor to bring him to the stage at this time as a William H. Parker Leadership Academy Hall of Honor Inductee.

Home Schooling Advantages Vs. Disadvantages

Home schooling is an option that is becoming more attractive to parents as time goes on. Schools have become increasingly unstable over the past couple of decades. Children roam the hallways unchecked, textbooks are outdated, violence is prevalent, children are bullied mercilessly, and the quality of education on the whole has greatly diminished.


What options do parents have to combat this downward spiral? Initially, private school was thought to be the answer. As enrollment in private schools soared many parents failed to see a difference between public and private schools. The problems were still the same.

The option of home schooling has been around for a long time; however, until recently it had not been so popular. The idea of home schooling seems like a cure-all to many parents due to the advantages this type of education provides over traditional schools. Children who are home schooled can avoid many of the problems schools have become known for. For one, the environment is less threatening. Children can learn without fearing other students, aggressive or nasty teachers, and be under the constant supervision of parents. In addition, home schooling allows parents to dictate the academic course of their children. Home schooling also allows students to proceed at their own speed. If a child is weak at multiplication and division, a parent can focus lessons on those skills in favor of another skill that the child might grasp rather easily.

Home schooling is also advantageous because it keeps children away from other students that may be corruptive forces. There are many students in school who do not value learning. This is not any fault of the schools; however, it is still a painful reality. These students can lead to the destruction of a stable learning environment. Home schooling keeps children focused on learning and not on avoiding social pressures.

It may sound like the perfect option, but there are many disadvantages of home schooling. First of all, home schooled children are usually less socialized. While schools can sometimes be the breeding ground for poor social behaviors, school is also a place where students learn to interact with others and build social skills. It seems a bit like a catch 22.

In addition, another drawback to home schooling could be implementation of an educational plan. Many parents are not qualified as teachers and may not understand what is necessary to ensure a child has access to the proper curriculum.

Finally, another disadvantage to home schooling is the necessity for parents to take full responsibility for their child’s education. If you choose to home school your child there is no one for you to blame if your child does poorly. The responsibility falls completely on the parent.

There are many advantages and disadvantages to home schooling. Before you begin a home schooling plan make sure you have evaluated your ability to properly instruct your child and provide a quality learning experience. If you do not think you can handle it, you might as well send your child to school but become more involved with his or her education.

Teacher Education for Distance Education Teacher

Teacher Education for

Distance Education Teacher.

  1. Introduction -:

We find Open Universities and Distance Education Institutions in all  the Countries.  But we find no Teacher Education for Distance Education Teacher (DET) anywhere. The teachers in Convention Education System (CES) and Distance Education System (DES) perform different tasks. Therefore, the skills acquired for teaching in CES may not be useful in DES.  According to the Manual for Self-Study of Distance Education Institutions, published by National Assessment and Accreditation , Banglore. There are more than ten Open Universities in India, where we find  more than 20,00,000 students are studying and more than 50,000 Counsellors are serving. Every University has the Directorate of Distance Education. Every Open University has its study centres. The teachers, working there, are from CES. Sometimes lecturers are conducted on the name of counselling. Teacher is expected to find out the field need. He is not able to write a script for A/V production. We find him lacking in the skills required for DES. It leads the thought of teacher education for DES teacher.

2. Academic Task in DES and the Role of a Teacher.

Broadly speaking there are two distinct types of academic functions in DES.

  • Discipline based development of courses/programmes.
  • System development and delivery of service.

It includes preparation of learning packages, preparation and maintenance of courses including Audio/Video programs and planning, development of system and procedures including evaluation of students, and research into various aspects of the system itself includes the delivery of various services to students and evaluation of programs.

As it is quoted in the Report of The Committee on the Structure for the Academic and Student Support Services System of the University and the Pattern of its Staffing conducted by IGNOU, New Delhi, in DES, Teachers are necessary for imparting instruction or for preparing educational material of for conducting other academic activities including guidance, designing & delivery of courses, and evaluation of the work done by the students.

The DES requires the services of certain specialist personnel who may not be teachers of administrators in the traditional sense. They would be performing a wide spectrum of functions which combine managerial/administrative competence with academic sensitivity and understanding. The performance of such intermediate level functions and the development of a category of specialist personnel for the purpose is necessary for the success of the DES.

3. Skills required to perform the Tasks and to perform the Role of Teacher -:

The skills required for a DES teacher are different than that of CES teacher. In CES, face -to-face teaching -learning process is going on. Therefore, the teacher has to acquire teaching skills and various methods of teaching in face-to-face situation. But in DES, the learners are in remote places, and their age group is not same. They study at their sphere time and most of the time independently. Considering these factors, teacher in DES has to acquire certain skills. A teacher in DES may not use all these skills at a time but these will be used task wise. He may carry this task or that. Therefore, he has to acquire all these skills in Teacher Education. The list of skills are as given below, One may add other skills also. But these are core skills required for DES Teacher.

  • Skills for designing Courses/Programs.
  • Skills for preparation of meetings.
  • Skills for writing Course units & program guides.
  • Skills for proof reading.
  • Skills for content and language editing.
  • Skills for the designing of the cover-page of print material, including graphics & illustrations.
  • Skills for writing scripts for Audio and Video programs.
  • Skills for conducting orientation programs and workshops.
  • Skills for preparing, checking and monitoring the feedback of assignments.
  • Skills for bringing out revision of the courses/programs and bringing out completely new edition of courses.
  • Skills for preparation and production of Audio/Video program.
  • Skills for interacting with other agencies, especially heads of the Educational institutions and Managers of the Industries companies.
  • Skills for counseling advice and guidance to the students.
  • Skills for developing question banks and conducting Assessment programs.
  • Skills for evaluating the students’ performance.
  • Skills for evaluating the programs.
  • Skills for planning to develop the courses/programs.
  • Skills for Translation.
  • Skills for designing and development of training material.
  • Skills for Training and orientation of counsellors.
  • Skills for presenting a paper in a Seminars.
  • Skills for performing researches for the system development and for discipline based development of courses/ programs.
  • Skills for handling illustruments, new technology.
  • Skills for presenting radio and T.V. talks.
  • Skills for presenting lessons on virtual classroom and monitoring these class rooms.
4. Teacher Education for DES Teacher -:

No one denies to accept pre-service teacher training degrees/ certificates in teacher education as a qualification for seeking employment as a teacher. The teacher education may be imparted through CES or through DES. The National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) accepts distance education as a useful and viable mode for training teachers presently serving in schools. This mode is also useful for providing training and continuing education support for other functionaries working in the school system, Thus, it is also useful for training the teacher in DES.

Teacher Education is a special requirement for a teacher in DES. One should acquire the skills to work as a teacher in DES. Though it can be given by CES, it is fruitful to start Teacher Education through DES. One should get a practical experiences to acquire the skills needed for him in DES.

5. Nature of Teacher Education for DES.

To implement Teacher Education through DES, it is necessary to decide programmecomponents as given below.

  • Adequate amount of self-learning printed course-material in distance education format.
  • Provision for audio and video packages.
  • Regular assignments which are fully evaluated within stipulated time.
  • Internship provision and its duration.
  • Evaluation shall be comprehensive and continuous.
  • Duration.
  • Contact programs.
  • Practicals.
  • Eligibility.
  • Evaluation system.

The program components may be added by the Expert Committee called for the purpose.

6. Conclusion -:

Teacher Education is necessary not only for the teachers working in CES but also for the teachers working in DES. The skills required teachers working in DES are somewhat different from those of teachers working in CES. It is necessary to give special attention to acquire the skills for the teachers working in DES. There is no Teacher education available for training DES teachers, Therefore, the teachers working in the DES or the teachers who are going to work in the DES will welcome teacher education in this field.

References -:

(1) The Report of The Committee on the Structure for the Academic and Student Support Services System of the University and the Pattern of its Staffing Conducted by IGNOU, New Delhi.

(2) Manual for Self-Study of Distance Education Institutions, published by National Assessment and Accreditation 2/4 Dr. Raj Kumar Road, P. Office No. 1075, Rajajinagar, Banglore – 560 010

(3) Norms and Standards for Teacher Education Institutions; Published by National Council for Teacher Education, C-2/10, Safadarjung, Development Area, New Delhi.

(4) Comparative Chart of Open Universities in brief published by Distance Education Council, New Delhi.

(5) ‘Five Years Plans’ and ‘Annual Reports’ published by Y.C.M. Open University, Nashik.

How to Become an Elementary School Teacher

If you’ve thought about becoming a teacher, one of the most important decisions you may have to make is which level of teaching suits you the best. Elementary, secondary, and post-secondary teaching all have very different characteristics and requirements, and shifting tracks once you get started would be likely to require that you go back to school. Therefore, your career path may be smoother if you choose carefully at the beginning, and focus your educational preparation accordingly.

Suppose you are interested in teaching very young children. In that case, you may want to be aware of the special characteristics that distinguish elementary school teachers, and how you would become an elementary school teacher yourself.

Distinguishing Characteristics of Elementary School Teachers

There are some characteristics that distinguish good teachers at all levels: a solid understanding of the subject matter; good communication skills, energy, creativity, leadership ability, and patience. But what are some of the particular characteristics that distinguish elementary school teachers?

In many ways, those characteristics can be defined by some of the special requirements of the job, such as:

  • A good base of generalist knowledge. Rather than specializing in a particular subject, elementary school teachers often teach a range of subjects to a given class or age group.
  • A fundamental understanding of child psychology. Elementary school children are just learning to learn, and teachers need to be able to perceive how different children are motivated, and what factors may be inhibiting some of them.
  • A basic knowledge of child development. Many learning disabilities are not spotted until a child is in elementary school, and the earlier a teacher can help identify special needs, the more can be done for the child.
  • Sensitivity to non-verbal cues. Small children have often not yet learned how to express themselves clearly, so a sensitivity to non-verbal signals can be the key to communication.
  • A tactful nature for dealing with parents. Parents are an especially important part of the learning experience at the elementary school level, and being able to communicate in a clear yet non-threatening way is a useful attribute.

In addition to the above broad range of skills, there are specific educational credentials needed to become an elementary school teacher.

Elementary School Teacher Education

Although requirements for elementary school teacher education vary from state to state, here are three common elements of most programs:

  • A bachelor’s degree. This would include both a broad background in general studies and specific education in teaching-related subjects such as classroom techniques and child psychology.
  • Student-teaching experience. Education degree programs commonly include a requirement for a student-teaching internship.
  • State certification. Public schools in all 50 states require teachers to be licensed, with the license often specific to the age group being taught. Private schools are less likely to require licensure.

Employment Outlook

Employment growth for teachers is expected to be about typical for the economy as a whole, but it is projected to be especially strong at the elementary school level. This occupation is less cyclical than most, so overall the job market is both promising and stable. Median income levels are above the national average.

Teaching is not an occupation for someone looking to get rich. However, for the personally enriching experience of helping children get a good start along the educational path, it can be an ideal choice.

Developing A Homeschooling Curriculum

If you’ve got simply created the choice to home school your kid then your next important step should be to find and develop your homeschooling course of study.

There are variety totally different of various} homeschooling curriculums on the market every with different designs. Several oldsters evaluate over one course of study and combine them to develop a course of study they feel is well matched for his or her child’s learning style. It should take it slow to switch a certain homeschooling course of study, however this is often fine as a result of if you’re getting to home school for the future than having a well suited curriculum is incredibly important. Conjointly because the parents become responded to the modification of the homeschooling course of study becomes easier.

The different types of curriculum sometimes are available in one in every of two varieties, full packages or partial packages. For parents who feel there kid desires strict structure to find out than they might purchase an entire package. The plain advantage to thosepackages is it’ll define each program, as well as faith, and reporting procedure that the parent is legally responsible for. The foremost disadvantage would be that the value is incredibly high and there’s no guarantee that the program is well matched for the kid. Parents that have homeschooled for a short time, sometimes try and mix some partialpackages into an entire package over time. This permits them time to determine their child’s learning vogue, further as their own teaching vogue, whereas they need the flexibleness to combine and match programs from totally different homeschooling curriculums into one they’re comfortable using.

Great thanks to begin to develop a course of studyfor your kid are to get course of study guides. There are several terribly careful outlines of virtually each program obtainable. These guides define every program with potential upsides and disadvantages for everyone. It’s the parent’s responsibility to make your mind up that program from that course of studycan work best for his or her kid. The advantage of developing a course of study this way is that the price savings additionally as having input on the design within which your kid can learn. The disadvantage is that the parent should remember of necessities the wants the necessities their jurisdiction puts on homeschooling and it’s their responsibility these requirements are met. Additionally in following this combine and match system the parents are also responsible for decisive the reportage procedure which could not forever be as clear once programs are fused along from multiple homeschooling curriculums.

So once parents have decided to home school their kid, they need an awfully necessary call to make. Developing a homeschooling curriculum that may keep their child’s attention and stimulate learning is imperative if parents expect to be successful.

How To Choose An Ideal Yoga Teacher Training School

Investing money and time in a teacher training program in yoga can be a very amazing way to effectively deepen the understanding that you have in yoga so that you will be able to share with your students. Finding the right yoga teacher training school can make a great difference and you can have a life-changing experience.

In the last few years, the teacher training programs have seen a major boom and yoga has been taken as a lucrative business. What you should note is that the making of a high quality program takes a lot of time, experience and dedication. However, some of the yoga schools that you see around are only taken to be a revenue source and nothing else. In many cases, the quality of the programs will reflect the priorities that such a school has.

When looking for the best yoga teacher training school, you need to ask questions that will help you know just how seriously the programs are taken. You need to use questions that will help you in determining whether programs will be able to prioritize personal development as well as the education that you are seeking. By asking questions, you will be able to know whether the training school is interested in the financial aspects of enrolling you.

A yoga teacher training program needs to be extensive. If you choose a program that gets you a certificate fast, when you graduate, you will feel just vaguely familiar with the different materials. The best programs offer a person an exposure which is repeated, to all the concepts which are important. The best programs also give you adequate feedback and support at all times. You are also given enough time to grasp information so that you will gain confidence and feel that you have enough practice to stand and teach the philosophical concepts and all yoga poses to literally any person.

Teacher training courses need to be as comprehensive as possible. Since you will be teaching, you need to be able to answer any questions that your students may ask you. You should be able to handle all issues and explain all the terms that you use while teaching. Some of the questions to ask include:
  • Is the yoga school registered? This is an important question that will help you to determine the legitimacy of the school. Yoga alliance is a key player in the world of yoga and getting a yoga teaching job can be a hard thing if you do not attend a school that is registered. Making sure of this will save you a lot of frustration in the future.
  • What approach is taken in the training and will it be in a position to mold you into a versatile yoga teacher? When choosing a school, look at the programs offered extensively. Check to see if there are any programs that are focused on an approach which resonates well with you. Consider if the certificate you get at the end of the course will make you a nifty instructor who can adapt in various settings.

Thus, factor in all the aspects mentioned above so as to choose an ideal yoga teacher training school. Make a healthy choice in yoga today and help improve the quality of life of those around you too.

Christian Homeschooling Curriculum

There are many reasons why someone would want to home school their children with a Christian homeschooling curriculum. A lot of homeschooling programs have some of thebest programs available on the market.

Some may even argue they are better than traditional school because of the extreme focus being put on one child. With most Christian programs for schooling children, you may find CD-ROMS used for educating the child. The students can benefit from grade specific texts. Just like any other traditional school, the curriculum is split up into certain grade levels. Most Christian homeschooling have a strong international emphasis. Some users of these types of programs find the work challenging and advanced, which could be seen as a good thing when you want your child to learn above the common lessons that are being taught in regular school.

There are many benefits and disadvantages to using Christian homeschooling curriculums. For the advantages, the child can learn at their own speed, but at the same time challenge themselves to more advanced material. As we all know, advanced learning is important when dealing with the real world and certain workplace environments. Most of these homeschooling programs cover all grades and is focused towards preparing the student forcollege. Even though these are all good things dealing with homeschooling, there are some disadvantages that should also be considered. For one, the student may become easily distracted at home than they would in a more traditional setting. Television, video gamesand interruptions are some challenges a child may face when being taught at home. Also, if the child does not grasp the material, they might need outside help. Sometimes, children may need a live tutor to help them besides a CD-ROM or computer based learning curriculum.

Christian homeschooling curriculums vary in cost, depending on the program and the specifics of the learning plans. Some programs charge on a monthly basis, which parents find more affordable and reasonable. I have seen some that only cost $100 a month, which seems like a reasonable price for students or guardians looking to school their children at home. However, if the child will need extra help for grasping the material, they may need an outside tutor or teacher to walk them through the learning plans. This can add on to the initial cost as another expense.

Welcome To Future Homeschooling

Welcome to the universe of ‘Future Homeschooling’. We are an association of academicians, technocrats and visionaries who plan to develop adapting past the domains and dividers of classrooms.

We are an association that intends to bring classrooms to homes and change folks information instructors. We are an association that tries to advertise amicability and freedom in adapting, in this way making each understudy a ‘Well – Learned Student’. Self-teaching as an idea is age- old, however our ceaseless research and experience is centered around developing it. We thrive reliable, successful and cement adapting through Homeschooling. We strive to settle on Homeschooling a technique for decision for each guardian and understudy. We are not only another age rationality. We are ‘Another Age Movement.

Welcome to the universe of ‘Advantageous Learning’. Welcome to the universe of International Schooling .

Envision a world where one can pick what one needs to learn. Envision a world where one can pick when and how to learn. Envision a world where instruction and learning isinstalled in your every day life… a world without boundaries to taking in, an universe of ‘Learning with Freedom’. A kid’s trip of learning starts the minute she/he enters this world. From the early social and natural figuring out how to essential dialect structures and tallying, there is so much that a youngster adapts before being prepared for standard educating. Actually when the youngster starts to ingest learning at school, the foundation, premium and training of folks and relatives assumes a vital part in fortifying and repeating that instruction. A generally educated parent or kin can have a discriminating positive impact in improving the learning at school.

Global Schooling feels free to tries to make that positive learning environment through ‘Aggregate and Comprehensive Education’. Our understudies are not by any means the only ones who profit from our vision. The folks, the kin and society on the loose are instructed by our deliberations. Making an ideal learning environment on the go is vital to our conviction. A more intelligent and more educated family ought to have the capacity to examine differed subjects of academic adapting over the feasting table. With the coming of cell phones, tablets andinnovation on the loose, learning might beconsolidated with better learning situations of decision and simplicity.

Our understudies have the flexibility to finish their excercises while sitting in the recreation center, complete the assignments while lying on the sofa or take their assessment while going in the transport, just to refer to a couple of cases. Your school and your learning stays and moves with you. But then you are in front of a number of your countrymen. Worldwide Schooling is not pretty much the routine strategy for Homeschooling. It is to be sure another age ‘Helpful Schooling’. It absorbs the focal topic and practices of both accepted and contemporary educating rationalities. It is dynamic, consistent and developing.

Home school versus formal education

The debate among many people is whether homeschooling kids is better than formal education. The former would be fruitful if home school is done the right way.

Children adopt a customized curriculum provided by their parents whereas in a private school, they are forced to learn whatever is taught by the teachers. Each child is unique and the style of learning differs from one child to another. Some children are good at grasping information from textbooks and a theory based method would be useful for them but some of them prefer practical method of teaching where it’s easy for them to remember and this kind of an approach is also more interesting to them.

Parents who home school their kids should provide a more pleasing and healthy learning environment for their kids. Apart from academics, children learn to bond with their family, which is an advantage in home school. Good habits can be instilled in them. Apart from concentrating on academics, children have ample time to develop their talents. Everyone learns from each and every task that we do, whether it is routine or a onetime task. Children can go for music classes, swimming, skating etc. They can do well in their academics as well as extracurricular activities whereas there is a time constraint in private schools. Some schools demand children to be more focused on academics than extracurricular activities, as they need more grades.

More often when parents weigh the options of home school and formal education, one major issue is that kids don’t get an opportunity to socialize if parents home school them. At school, children can play together and participate in competitions. It’s easy for them to socialize but peer influence can change the attitude of your kids easily and it’s difficult for parents to know if their kids are being influenced in the right or the wrong way. Children can always interact and get along with other kids who are being homeschooled by their parents. They tend to become more co operative and disciplined. Kids who are homeschooled will get more attention and discussing about their academics and extracurricular activities becomes easy, as children feel more comfortable in such an environment.

Sending your child to a private school is expensive. Course fee, educational trips, projects, cost of resources, transportation are expensive whereas when parents home school they know what exactly their children need and based on that they can buy the required materials. When your kids join the other homeschooled ones, educational trips will be less expensive and sometimes you need pay even a penny. Some people believe that children who are being home schooled will have difficulty in getting college admissions which will lead to less number of career opportunities but that’s not true as most colleges prefer homeschooled children as they are more disciplined and self motivated to learn new things. In home school, every parent struggles to get their children in the right track in the beginning but ultimately they learn how to home school their kids.

Easy Tips To Help You With Homeschooling

Our life is a process of learning new things all the time. Schools are designed to teach us most of what we need to know, but sadly they do not always live up to our expectations. Homeschooling can be hard, but this advice can help you through it a positive way.


Know what your state requires of homeschooling programs. Minimum number of homeschooling days, for example, can vary from state to state. A lot of states have curriculums, but you might have to put something together yourself. It’s best to use the local curriculum if possible.

Homeschooling can pose some issues if your other son or daughter is young. You must set aside different times of the day for each of your children. Find activities which are age-appropriate for both children. Any activity that doesn’t interfere with development is a great idea.

Work art projects into topics besides art itself. Have your kids do an art project about each thing you learn about. They can sculpt, act, sing – the limits are only your imagination! The more active your children are while they are learning, the more that total immersion will help the lesson to stick in their minds.

Make sure you do some research before jumping into homeschooling. The Internet is a vast source of unique and interesting insights and resources and offers ideas for practically every aspect of the homeschooling experience. Regardless of how much this idea appeals to you, you have to make sure that you have the energy, time, and money to provide your children with the best education.
Get in touch with the state Homeschool Association to discover laws and guidelines you have to follow. There are some states that allow you to be a ‘private school‘ and there are other places that want to test your children through the state. You should be in touch with the local school district about your homeschooling plans, also.

Make a list of the positives and negatives of public school and then do the same for homeschooling. This list can guide you as you develop your lessons so that you can make sure that your children are learning everything that that was missing at public school. It will start to become a list of various things you need to avoid so you’re able to stay focused on their learning. Make sure that you store this list and look back at it when necessary.

When homeschooling, it is just as important for the parent to learn as it is for the child. Reading this article and others like it will ensure that you are the best teacher possible for your children. You will be sure that you will be giving your kids a great homeschooling experience.

Interpersonal Skills are Need as a Primary School Teacher

Interpersonal skills are the important skills which we use every day to communicate and interact with others, both in groups and personally.

Those people who have developed strong interpersonal skills are usually more successful in both personal and their professional lives. Great students can be created only with the help of great teachers. Student’s achievement depends on the inspiration of the teacher so it is very important to help the educators and teachers so they can inspire the students in a more efficient way. Proper teacher training programs would help the teachers to communicate with the students more easily and in efficient way and the students will also receive the quality education easily.

Interaction with the student
The most important part of teaching is that every teaching session should be an interactive session. This helps the students to get free with the teachers and it also helps the students to explain their problem to their teachers without hesitation. In a classroom teacher has play a role of a parent, a counselor who can understand the need of every student and will be a respectful and caring person who will be close to every students heart.
Empathy
Early childhood care and education technique emphasizes on empathy as it is the ability of the teacher to express care and concern for a student. If the teacher can place himself in the position of the student and can understand the problem from the student’s point of view and where they are lacking then it will be easier for the teachers to find the solution of that problem.

Listening actively to the students
According to the primary teacher teaching course active listening is very necessary for the students who cannot express themselves. This technique also helps in easy conversation between student andteacher. It also helps to prevent any conflict in the classroom. The child who is facing difficulty in expressing they will also feel free in conversing with the teachers.
Equal importance to every student
Teachers must give equal importance to each student in the class so that none of the student should feel that they are not important. Primary teaching in schools helps every child to build their self-esteem. This method teaching technique will help the students to work together. Making a team of two students and giving them a project will encourage them to learn.
Giving proper demonstration
This method of teaching helps to give proper demonstration in classes. Explaining a topic to the students verbally is a means of teaching but if a teacher uses charts and picture to explain the same thing to the students so that would be easier for them to understand. Demonstrating a topic with visual effects creates an image in student’s mind which would be easier for them to remember.
Humor
Humor helps the teacher to keep the students motivated on the tasks. Appropriate and well placed humor gives additional motivation to the students and eagerness to learn more. The most important thing in the classroom is to get the student’s attention in the learning process and humor helps in keeping that attention.

Teaching Practice: Concept, Stages, Objectives & Suggestions

Introduction

Practice teaching occupies a key position in the programme of teacher education. It is a culminating experience in teacher preparation. It provides opportunity to beginning teachers to become socialized into the profession (Furlong et.al, 1988). Performance during practice teaching provides some basis for predicting the future success of the teacher. Outgoing popularity and centrality of practice teaching is an important contributing factor towards the quality of teacher education programme. During practice teaching working with students in schools provides a high degree of emotional involvement of a mostly positive nature. Student teachers feel themselves grow through experience and they begin to link to a culture of teaching. During practice teaching, they feel engaged, challenged and even empowered (Trowbridge and Bybee, 1994; sharafuddin, and Allison, 1969).

Definitions of Practice Teaching

A number of terms such as the practice teaching, student teaching, teaching practice, field studies, infield experience, school based experience or internship are used to refer to this activity (Taneja, 2000). The term practice teaching embraces all the learning experiences of student teachers in schools (Ashraf, 1999). The term practice teaching has three major connotations: the practicing of teaching skills and acquisition of the role of a teacher; the whole range of experiences that students go through in schools; and the practical aspects of the course as distinct from theoretical studies (Stones and morris, 1977).

Practice teaching is the name of the preparation of student teachers for teaching by practical training. It is the practical use of teaching methods, teaching strategies, teaching principles, teaching techniques and practical training and practice / exercise of different activities of daily school life.

Objectives of Practice Teaching

According to Akbar (2002) Following are the objectives of practice teaching:

  • To provide the prospective teachers with an opportunity of establishing an appropriate teacher pupil relationship.
  • To provide an opportunity for evaluating the student potential as a teacher and suitability for the teaching profession.
  • To develop personal relationship with others: administrators, teachers, parents and students.
  • To provide the future teacher with practical experience in school to overcome the problems of discipline and enable him / her to develop method of control.
  • To provide with an opportunity to put theories into practice and to develop a deeper understanding of educational principles and their implication for learning.
  • To enable the student teachers effectively to plan and prepare lessons.
  • To develop skill in the use of fundamental procedures, techniques and methods of teaching.
  • To develop desirable professional interests, attitudes and ideas relative to teaching profession.
  • To enable student teachers to acquire desirable characteristics / traits of a teacher and to display appropriate behaviour.
  • To provide student teachers with an opportunity to have teaching evaluated and to gain from the benefits of constructive criticism.
  • To provide an opportunity for self evaluation and to discover own strengths and weaknesses.
  • To develop skills in future teachers related to teaching like fluent speaking, meaningful reading, using blackboard and other teaching material.
  • To provide an opportunity to liaise with school environment, its functioning and with community and its resources.
  • To provide for the exchange of ideas and methods between practicing school and teacher training institution, by teacher training institutions’ staff and students, perceiving new ideas material and equipment in use in practicing schools and introducing new ideas, material and equipments into the school.

Stages in Practice teaching

Following are the stages in practice teaching

Primary Stage

It is necessary to make a trip of student teachers to that particular school, where they are going for practice teaching. The main aim of this tour is to see the concerned head teacher, class teachers and school staff in order to acquire information about school and its environment. Student teachers must observe the teaching methods of school, methods of concerned class teacher, copies or notebooks of the students and their usual routine. On return from the tour student teachers must have the details about scheme of studies, age of the students, strength of the class, abilities and specific problems of the students, timing of the school, textbooks and teaching aids.

Preparation of Lesson

For the preparation of lesson student teachers must know the subject, the relevant books and audio visual aids. Which he / she is going to teach. Because already prepared lessons give confidence to the teacher. Student teachers and supervisor can reform the teaching learning process after its evaluation.

Qualities of a Good Lesson

A good lesson has the following qualities:

i)                    Lesson planning should be in complete detail.

ii)                   Lesson should be interesting.

iii)                 Effective and timely use of teaching methods and teaching aids.

iv)                 Student should be ready for learning.

v)                  Students should be involved practically in teaching learning process.

vi)                 Lesson should be taught in professional and friendly environment.

vii)               All students should be given same attention by keeping in view their individual differences.

Teaching in Classroom

The stage of teaching in the classroom is known as  practice teaching. Student teachers while teaching   in the classroom passes through different steps of his / her teaching (Introduction, presentation, recapitulation) and concerned teacher  / supervisor assesses / observes his / her lesson.

Evaluation of Teaching Practice

In order to evaluate the teaching practice supervisor observe the student teacher while teaching in the classroom. Supervisor evaluates / observes the punctuality, lesson planning, teaching methods, use of audio visual aids, adequacy of audio visual aids, pitch of voice, dress, start and end of lesson, interest of the students, discipline of class, use of black / white board, students’ notebooks and objectives of the lesson.

Participation in Other routine Works of School

Teaching in the classroom is not only the objective of teaching practice, but also to provide training in all activities / work which student teachers are going to perform in future during their job. For this purpose they have to spend whole day in school as teacher. They have to participate in all the activities of school e.g preparation of timetable, preparation and maintenance of different registers, evaluation of class work and home work, arrangement of tutorial groups, sports / games, morning assembly, co-curricular activities, duty during recess, duty as day master, duty before and after school timing, decoration of classroom, preparation and maintenance of attendance board, news board, information board, look after and arrangements of A V aids room, home economics room, science laboratories and library.

How to deal with students’ parents, officers of the school, school employees and guests are also the part of teaching practice. Duties as invigilators, preparation of question papers for examinations, evaluation of answer scripts and compilation of results is also part of teaching practice.

Role of Supervisor in Teaching Practice

Supervisor has an important role in practice teaching as:

i)                    A resource person

ii)                   An adviser

iii)                 A general moral booster

iv)                 An interpreter of feedback

v)                  An assessor

Supervisor’s duty is not only to evaluate the lessons of teaching practice, but by using his / her all the abilities to make this experience (All the stages of teaching practice) result oriented. He / she should has all the planning before hand. He / she should have meeting and conversion with teacher educators, experienced teachers of the institution, educationists, concerned school head teachers and other teachers.

Introductory lectures should be arranged before the departure of student teachers to the practicing schools in order to aware the student teachers about the preparation of lesson plans and other assigned activities. During teaching practice it is the duty of supervisors to supervise their lessons, other assigned activities, guidance and counseling as well as provide the student teachers with feed back and to enable them so that they can criticize and reform themselves. During the teaching practice student teachers should not be criticized in front of the practicing school staff and students. If there is a need then all the student teachers should be gathered and should be scolded and warned without nominating and asking the name. Supervisors’ role is to prepare teachers for future, therefore he / she should act as a facilitator.

Teaching Practice in Pakistan

Different teacher training programmes are being offered in Pakistan. In all the programmes teaching practice is compulsory component except M.Ed (Master of Education). In true spirit we can produce good teachers through this activity, but the procedure adopted in Pakistan is just to pass / kill the time. Teaching practice duration is very short, it is about 4 to 8 weeks or teaching of 60 to 75 lessons. During teaching practice student teachers are bound to the classrooms for teaching. They are not trained for the other activities performed in schools. Therefore, effective learning could not take place. Student teachers are bound to use easy principles and methods of teaching. They are just being taught how to start the lesson, how to control the class, how to keep an eye over the students while writing on the black / white board.

Teaching practice is doing nothing to teaching other than adhoc basis. The schools where teaching practice is conducted are doing nothing but only bearing it and not taking active part in the preparation of teachers of future. The administration and teachers of practicing schools are not aware with the information and evaluation techniques, which are used during teaching practice. They are not fully aware about the importance of teaching practice for student teachers and future generations.

It is a fact that student teachers are not perfect teachers, practicing schoolteachers can’t give them full authorities but they can trust on them. Practically two ways are being seen here in Pakistan. Firstly these uninvited guests are consider inferiors teachers and criticized without any justification. Secondly some teachers transfer their all burden to them.

 

In some teacher training institutions selection of lessons is kept up to the choice of student teachers and they select such lessons which are very easy and in which minimum audio visual aids are used.

Suggestions to Improve Teaching Practice in Pakistan

Here are some suggestions to improve the teaching practice in Pakistan.

a)      In teacher training institutions teaching methods were not only teach but also practically demonstrated by the teacher educators.

b)      The duration of teaching practice should be increased up to 12 weeks at least, so that practical training should be given for a quarter of the year.

c)      Teaching practice should not be consisted of classroom teaching only. Other aspects like attendance of students, collection of fee, calculation of fee, preparation of registers, conduct of morning assembly, conduct of co-curricular activities, preparation of question papers, marking of answer scripts, compilation of results, solution of students’ problems and meetings with students’ parents should be included.

d)      Microteaching should be adopted in teacher training institutions and model lessons should be given before student teachers by experts as well as by video films.

e)      Student teachers are not given marks only for model lessons and all the aspects of teaching practice should be included in evaluation.

f)        In order to make the evaluation of teaching practice more effective, appropriateness of lesson, teaching methods, teaching aids, practical organization of lesson, interest of students and teachers and students’ answers should be included in evaluation.

g)      It should be encouraged that student teachers make audio visual aids by them selves and student teachers should be given  / provided guidance after every lesson.

h)      In order to make teaching practice more effective, it is also proposed that student teachers should watch the lessons of experienced teachers for one week and write evaluation report about them and supervisors should provide guidelines to student teachers in the light of this evaluation report.

i)        It should be ensured that student teachers keep the sequence of lessons in such a way, so that they can teach all types of lessons and use different teaching methods.

j)        Prior to teaching practice student teachers should practice in their fellows in order to build more confidence in them.

k)      During teaching practice student teachers should be given projects, which cover all the aspects of teaching practice i.e. (preparation of teaching kit, planning for decoration of classrooms, betterment of environment and provision of facilities).

l)        During practice teaching prospective teachers should be made habitual of preparing daily lesson plan.

m)    Practice teaching should be more realistic and suited to the actual class room situations.

Conclusion

Teaching practice is an activity, which can play an important role in the preparation of teachers. Its effectiveness is necessary for the nation. It is a milestone for professional adolescence.  It is a combination of personality, professional skills, knowledge and training, which is fuel for an endless journey. Now it is the duty / responsibility of teacher educators and teachers of practicing schools to make this fuel / expenditure endless.

Bibliography

Akbar, R.A. (2002).A study of Practice Teaching of Prospective Secondary School

Teachers and Development of a Practice Teaching Model, Arid Agricultural

University, Rawalpindi (Unpublished PhD Thesis).

Ali Murtaza,(2005). Comparative Study of Practice Teaching in Formal and Non formal

Systems and Development of a Model, Arid Agricultural  University, Rawalpindi

(Unpublished PhD Thesis).

Brown, P.D. & Brown N.R.(1990). Effective Teaching Practice. Stanley Thornes,

England.

Cohen, a. & Carver, N. (1970). A Students’ guide to Teaching Practice. University of

London Press, London.

Cohen, L.& Manion, L.(1983). A Guide to teaching Practice. Methuen, London.

Furlong, V.J.;P.U. Hirst and K. Pocklington.(1988). Initial Teacher Training and The

Role of the chool. Open University Press, Philadelphia.

Govt. of Pakistan. (1997). Pakistan Vision 2010. report; seminar on education. Planning

and Development Division, Islamabad.

Malik, S.R.(1992). The System of education in Pakistan. National Book Foundation,

Lahore.

Muhammad Ashraf (1990). Dictionary of Primary Education. A.P.H. Publishing

Corporation, New Delhi.

Shah, R.A.(1995). Education and Teacher education in Pakistan. Pakistan study Centre,

University of Sindh, Jamshoro.

Taneja, R.P.(2000). Encyclopedia of Comparative Education, Vol.4. Anmol Publications

Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi.

Walkin, L.C.(    ). Instructional Techniques Practice. Stanley Thornes, Bargenham.

Home School Education – Advantages And Disadvantages

Why Parents Choose a Home School Education

An increasing number of children today are receiving a home school education. The reasons for making the choice to homeschool their kids varies from family to family but there are three main reasons why parents are removing their children from the public school system and giving them a home school education.

The first reason is that the public education system in the United States is struggling to provide a proper education for the nation’s children with out of date text books, run down school buildings and inadequate equipment. Provision of a home school education enables the parents to have control over the quality of the educational materials used by their children and the general conditions in which they are educated.

The second reason is that parents wish to assume more control over the influences their children will be exposed to. This is often on the basis of religious grounds but, very often, it is simply because a home school education will ensure the child learns the values upheld by the family and is taught from an early age what behavior is appropriate. Unfortunately, many public schools have a poor reputation for instilling good discipline in students. This often results in badly behaved children disrupting lessons and preventing their peers from getting the full benefit of classes. Discipline and the upholding of proper standards of behavior is an important part of a home school education.

The third reason many parents choose to give their children a home school education is fear for their safety. Violence is on the increase everywhere and the public school system has not escaped this trend. Violence in the public education system is getting worse and the individual acts of violence are more serious. Since the shocking events at Columbine High School there have been further tragedies involving firearms where teachers and students have been injured or killed. A home school education ensures the safety of children who would otherwise be seriously at risk of harm.

The Disadvantages of Opting For Homeschooling

Providing a home school education is not simply a matter of parental choice. In most cases the state education board of the state in which the family resides will have to approve a decision to give a child a home school education. The person taking on the responsibility of homeschooling must be certified to be a home teacher, the curriculum must follow the state curriculum, and the text books and other educational materials to be used must be approved by the state. Although this might seen like undue interference in what is a matter of personal choice, the state has a responsibility to ensure that all children receive an adequate standard of education and checks will be made to ensure that any child being kept away from public school is being properly educated.

A home school education might mean that a child is deprived of certain opportunities which would have been available within the public school system. There could be difficulties in providing facilities for athletic children to realize their potential. Musically talented children could be similarly disadvantaged. In some states there is provision for children receiving a home school education to take part in amenities such as being able to attend sports lessons and join after-school clubs. However, the level of assistance provided to homeschooling parents is not uniform and varies a lot from state to state.

The final potential disadvantage to affect children receiving a home school education is that they will not develop the social skills which will be important as they grow up. Social interaction with their peers and with adults outside the family is essential if a child is going to grow up with a properly balance personality and a reasonable level of social skills. These developmental issues can be fairly easily overcome if the child lives in a state where homeschooling parents are given support and the child receiving a home school education is accepted into classes and extra-curricular activities.

The decision to keep a child out of the public education system is not one any parent would make lightly and any weighing up of the pros and cons must take into account the level of support the state will provide. However, if the public school system continues to deteriorate, the number of children receiving a home school education is bound to increase.

Homeschooling and it’s Advantage

Homeschooling is really an intensifying movement about the country and the entire world, during which moms and dads choose to educate their little ones in the home rather than transmitting the crooks to a conventional open or even individual school.

Individuals choose homeschooling for many different causes, such as discontentment using the instructional available options, diverse non secular morals or even instructional philosophies, as well as the fact that little ones aren’t growing inside conventional school framework.

The homeschooling movement commenced rising within the 1970s, whenever some popular authors as well as experts, for instance David Holt as well as Dorothy as well as Raymond Moore, started talking about instructional change, that they encouraged homeschooling as a substitute instructional alternative. Using the Nationwide Home Schooling Analysis Start, these days there are over two thousand little ones becoming homeschooled within U.S., using the percent rapidly growing by 7 % to 15 % every year. Homeschooling is actually appropriate in all of the 50 says as well as in most unusual countries.

Do you know the prerequisites?

Legitimate prerequisites for homeschooling within U.S., changes from place to place. A number of says possess handful of or even simply no prerequisites; other folks obtain account testimonials or even standardized tests on selected time intervals.

As outlined by Holt, creator on the best-selling book Train your own personal, it is important moms and dads ought for homeschooling their little ones is actually “to just like them, appreciate their organization, their actual occurrence, their energy, foolishness, as well as love. They must appreciate all their speak as well as concerns, and enjoy equally trying to answer individuals concerns. Inches For the majority associated with moms and dads whom home school, the only real requirement is the wish for this, and also devotion for the instructional method.

Home school materials is usually high-priced, affordable or even free. Take care to never invest a lot you can’t modify training course when you remember to prepare money. You can understand as well as producing modifications. Make the most of most of these chances to be lent materials as well as to find some good free provides straight up to your residence school.
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Materials for residence educational institutions:

This site possesses internet areas for actual materials, curriculum as well as provides. Have the homeschooling as well as instructional for a lesser amount of. You might mail away for. Free of charge stuff that’s available on-line is actually under the relevant web site in other places with A to Z Home’s Cool. Utilize the website list or even website internet searchengine proceeding to uncover free internet methods.

Using Chess to Teach Math in Elementary Schools

Using Chess to Teach Math in Elementary Schools

Frank Ho

Founder of Ho Math and Chess™ Learning Centre, Vancouver

Canada certified math teacher

Chess has been heralded as a miracle to help children develop their math skills. How true is it? After my over 10 years of research and teaching of math, I think the answer is not a simple yes or no, rather it depends on how chess instruction is delivered. If chess is delivered as a pure game and taught in a way that it has nothing to do with math then the impact on math learning is minimum. On the other hand, if chess is integrated into mathworksheets then the effect is more significant. This is proven from my own teaching observation and also the USA research data collected in Illinois (visithttp://www.thechessacademy.org/Math_Data.htm for details.).

A simple minded approach to use chess to teach math in the elementary schools is to have chess lessons in a math class and chess in this case is treated as a separate project or as a part of problem solving set. For those children who do not like to play chess, this could present problems for them since the benefits of playing chess can not be delivered to those who do not necessarily play chess. In this model, math worksheets have very little to do with chess and chess benefits on computation is very minimum.

The more robust approach is truly integrating chess into math curriculum such that when children work on math worksheets, they directly work on math and chess integratedworksheets. The trouble is how to truly mesh or integrate chess into math worksheets? At Ho Math and Chess™, we have successfully in truly integrating chess into math using our invented innovative technologies, namely they are listed as follows:

1.Geometry Chess Symbols

2.    Ho Math and Chess™ Teaching Set

3.    Frankho Chess Mazes

4.    Frankho IQ Chess Math Brainpower Workout

5.    Math and Chess Integrated Workbooks

Our research and experiment at Ho Math and Chess™ has found out that the marriage of math, chess and IQ math puzzles has significant in improving children’s math ability. The combination of math pure number crunching problems, along with chess puzzles, word problems, and IQ puzzles give children the opportunities to expose an array of problems of pattern, table, diagrams, symbols, equations, and figures. Children tend to get involved more in their thinking process with integrated materials. It is this kind of deep thinking process which truly raise children’s math ability. The truly integrated worksheet of math, chess, IQ puzzles also is more challenged for children. Most of children like integrated worksheet more than pure computational styleworksheets.

To get the true benefits of using chess to teach math in elementary school, it requires the key which links math and chess. I have found and discovered the key which links between chess and math and by using the key, I have created over 20 math and chess integrated workbooks. Not only these math and chess integrated workbooks can raise children’s mathmarks at their day schools, they are also fun to work with and provide entertainment and challenge for children.

How to Advance Your Career As a Elementary School Teacher

In recent times, the career ground of elementary school education in the United States has become highly rewarding and the most favored occupation.

In past few years, this career option has gained enough recognition and turned out to be one of the few career areas that offer better job prospects and salary that are complemented with solid benefits. In fact, this is one of the few professions that provide you with opportunities to handle important responsibilities like assisting children with educational and emotional development in the beginning of their academic years. These days many elementary school teachers primarily play the role of instructor for small children in several subjects. Adding to this, in some cases, two or more teachers also team up to cover a class.

Functioning as an elementary school teacher, you don’t just educates or teaches children, but perform the important task of making the basics of all the subjects, so that they never face any problem while studying difficult topics in the higher standards. The most important thing that you need to understand is the learning problems faced by the small schoolstudents and to offer teaching solutions to overcome from these problems. As a result, this can be only possible if you as an elementary school teacher receive proper training and education. We can certainly say that elementary school teaching is a physically and emotionally demanding occupation that requires a high level of energy. Though the profession has its own rewards, but it also demands skills so that you can perform your role more efficiently.

Now if you are looking forward to making a career as an elementary school teacher, you must be at least a graduate from a well recognized university in a subject which you would like to educate. At a minimum, you must include the completion of a bachelor’s degree. These days, many states of the United States require a specified number of education credits that needs to be earned over the course of study in order to teach in a public school. Though there are some states as well that look for teachers who have earned a master’s degree within a certain amount of time after starting to teach. Nevertheless, in recent times enrolling in a professional development school after bachelor’s degree is also increasingly more popular option.

Apart from all this, you even need to obtain a teaching certification. Today in many states of the United States the licensure is generally granted by the State Board of Education. Ultimately, this licensure can be granted to you by the State Board of Education, if you have passed all the educational requirements and completed a test based on proficiency in basic reading, writing and teaching skills. Though, it is also important to understand that the requirements may even vary by state.

There are many private schools also that do not look or require any certifications. In fact, many private schools are exempt from meeting state licensing standards, although they mostly favor candidates who have a bachelor’s degree in childhood education for elementary school teachers. They generally look for the candidates among recent college graduates. Besides this, many private schools associated with religious institutions desire candidates who share the values that are important to the institution. In addition to this, many private schools even conduct live teaching tests where you as an aspiring teacher will be asked to teach a class of students and based on your teaching process and the quality of teaching grades are given.

At times, you may even have to appear for an interview with the senior school management before you are selected as a teacher. Though, you may keep yourself updated about theelementary school teacher jobs by joining associations like the American Federation of Teachers.

The future prospect for elementary teachers is surely very good. In next few years many job openings are going to boom. The ratio of additional jobs is expected to grow as the demand of teaching jobs in poor and urban schools after a couple of years is also going to increase.

What is homeschooling ?

Self-teaching is the idea of instructing and mentoring kids at home, by folks, mentors and group parts. The idea follows its attaches to religious and good directions at devoted focuses.

In the current perspective, Homeschooling has been upheld because of the requirement for a redid learning environment for each tyke. While creating a feasible and significant Homeschooling alternative at International Schooling, we investigated the accompanying with through examination and study:

Understanding the needs of distinctive youngsters : Every youngster needs singular thoughtfulness regarding flourish learning and advancement. A contemporary school environment could possibly have the capacity to give the same. With given space for each exercise, theme and subject on the loose, the onus lies essential on the kid to make up for lost time and adjust. By treating each understudy as an alternate individual, we can ad lib to give deeper and dependable understanding of ideas, hypotheses and basics.

Empowering ‘Critical thinking’ aptitudes : Homeschooling with International Schooling is ascribed towards empowering ‘Result Finding without anyone else present’. Our educational program and course material pushes both Induced and Derived learning. We broaden the freedom to the understudies to touch base at results through their favored methodology. This involves a course structure that gives them revelation, certainty and faith in their capacities and techniques. The last point is to plan balanced people who exceed expectations in ‘Critical thinking’ at varsity levels and later on in their lives.

Succeeding adapting in a more recognizable environment : Research obviously shows that a more favorable learning environment can trigger the learning process and affect speedier and productive learning. Mix of music, feel and parental consultativeare a portion of the parameters that have demonstrated immediate connection with learning and comprehension. Global Schooling enables this learning process by amalgamating a lot of people such parameters into its Homeschooling.

Positive intercession of folks in the learning procedure : Our Homeschooling advertises positive reconciliation of the capacities of folks and their kids. Such incorporation advertises talks and helpful contentions, in this manner invigorating the ‘Adapting by Discovery and Discussion’ model. Folks are given clear rules on the most proficient method to push fascinating and compelling discourses with their wards. Also, we expect to find better worldwide practices through guardian gatherings and online journals.

Assistance of committed and altered learning : Pace, Mode and Method of learning have an immediate effect on the adequacy of learning. Great understudies deal with these three greatly improved than generally others. An altered equalization of these is instrumental in making the International Schooling Homeschooling a superior and sounder alternative.

Disadvantages of Home Schooling

If you are concerned about the education your child is receiving at either a public or private school, you may have considered the option of home schooling.

There are many advantages to home schooling that are easy to think of, but in making your decision you must also consider the disadvantages. Yes, despite all the bonuses you can think of in home schooling your child, there are many disadvantages to the process.

Home schooling is a process that requires a massive amount of time and dedication. If you want to home school your child you must be present for a large part of the day. Kids are kids. Depending on how motivated by academic success your child is, he or she may not require constant supervision. However, in many studies, parental supervision is the key behind the success of home schooling programs.

Parents must also possess instructional skills or access to someone who can teach effectively. Simply putting your child in a room with textbooks will most likely result in home schooling failure. In addition, you will have to purchase materials that public and private schools provide for students.

There is also the need to be able to serve as guidance counselor as your child may require specialized instruction due to a learning disability. Public and private schools usually provide these services with qualified individuals.

One important benefit of an academic institution is the opportunity for children to become properly socialized. Attending school with other children from all walks of life leads to the development of social skills. One of the disadvantages of home schooling is the relative isolation children have from their peers.

Many parents find comfort in blaming the educational system for the shortcomings in their child’s academic performance. If you choose to home school you will be accepting full responsibility for the outcome of your child’s education. This is more of a burden than it seems. Studies have shown that many home schooling ventures fail due to the fact that the home generally lacks qualified educators. Many parents have gripes about teachers, but the fact is that they generally have to teach large classes filled with children with diverse learning needs. In addition, certified educators have taken teaching classes and have passed state examinations to receive their teaching certificates.

When you approach the issue of home schooling you must examine both sides. Sure, there are plenty of advantages, but if you forget to look into the disadvantages, you may be setting yourself up for failure.

Why Is Pre-school Education Important for Children?

While pre-schools don’t follow the same structure of elementary schools and there are no formal rules and regulations, there is a chance to learn a lot through them by exploring and playing under the guidance of helpful and caring teachers.

They are important in helping a child gain some basic knowledge and pick up information that can also be useful once he starts elementary school.

Studies show that pre-schools aid a child’s development and students who have attended these schools do not require special education classes. Some of the major benefits of pre-school education for children are listed below.

Importance of pre-school education:

Acquire social skills – The best things that two to five year old children learn through various activities at pre-school are social skills. They learn how to follow instructions and how to co-operate with other young children in different activities. They tend to work together while drawing and construct different things in building sessions. By attending pre-schools children find their true social self as they find kids of the same age there. Toddlers who might not have blossomed at home can really sparkle at pre-school and children who are shy can learn to overcome their introvert tendencies too.

Learn the basics through play – The activities at pre-school are designed in such a manner that the kid learn a lot of basics while having fun with their peers. The singing activity introduces children to letters and alphabets and the block counting introduces them to numbers. When they hear stories they get introduced to sentence formation as well as language skills. The child can also get some exposure to biology and geology through nature walks and to colors and shapes through puzzles and finger painting activities.

Encourage creativity – Children get a lot more opportunities of building their creative minds through various crafty and artistic activities designed by pre-school teachers. They often don’t show their creative self at homes for fear of getting a scolding fo the mess it might create. With no such fear at pre-schools, they are able to explore the limits of their curious and imaginative minds.

Develop motor skills – A good pre-school also arranges various activities throughout the day in which the child has to run and climb. Activities like interactive games can also improve the child’s physical development and balance. With simple scissor cutting and bead threading tasks, a child’s motor skills as well as hand-eye coordination can develop. The group activities develops their physical as well as motor skills.

Therefore, parents should select the nursery schools so that their children get a strong base from their very childhood. Children who don’t attend pre-schools often encounter difficulty in following instructions, rules and regulations. Teachers who teach in kindergarten also say that children are better prepared to learn when they have already been taught socializing skills at preschool before.

Thus, attending pre-schools helps a child adjust easily to kindergartens. There are a lot of pre-schools in Abu Dhabi that have started to accept children when they are only two and a half years old, while there are others that admit kids after they celebrate their third or fourth birthdays. The top nurseries in Abu Dhabi, UAE try to give the best possible education to children so that the children can develop into better human beings in future.

If you are searching for top nurseries in Abu Dhabi, then the author of this article recommends Caterpillar Nursery.

The Pros And Cons Of Becoming An Elementary School Teacher

Following a vocation as a primary school teacher will give you a vital role in the development of our children’s thinking during imperative, earlier years. At this point, students are easily impressed and able absorb superb amounts of info.

The very future of many small kids lies lies with the earliest teachers they will ever have. Creativity and the ability to relate to first education kids is vital for these teachers to be effective in the classroom. First education teachers indoctrinate, coach, and entertain small children all to creatively condition important essential life skills.

An elementary school teacher will generally keep a class of students throughout the day. While the students may change classes for art, choir, p.e. Or other supplemental classes, they’ll have one primary teacher that may teach multiple subjects such as English, science, maths, history and more . The elementary education teacher general develops a robust relation ship with his / her class through a year of teaching the same students daily.

Today, nearly every kind of teacher will need to have at least basic PC talents and be well placed to teach students the proper way to run word processors, spread sheets, and other standard programs. This is an ability that during the past wasn’t available but will be part of any post secondary schooling for the aspiring teacher. PC laboratories are exceedingly commonplace in both non-public and larger public schools. This delivers superb opportunity for delightful, interesting, hands on communication between the teacher and the students.

For special education, junior school, teachers will be specially given training to work with these kids. The issues are sometimes intense, but the rewards great when working with special education scholars. The degree to which a student needs changed assignments is according to the level and stage of development every individual student is in. This makes it more complicated and challenging for the special education teacher to focus on and properly teach a single class of children at widely varying stages of development. The number of student a teacher will be working with will change between faculties, but in general, teachers in private colleges will enjoy smaller class sizes and more customized attention for each student.

Training required for elementary school instructors will be geared particularly toward a teaching career. For public education, sometimes school districts require a BSc or higher and courses specifically required for teaching junior school in the district. In private faculties licensure isn’t usually needed, but it is needed for public education in all fifty states. Required licensing is issued by state boards of education and will be based on the nation’s needs as well as individual district school board policies. Numerous states license for elementary education, others for precise grade ranges.

Elementary School Speeches Are About New Beginnings

Elementary school graduation speeches should reflect the age of the students. For that reason they should be short, have a touch of humour and be very easy to understand.

Elementary School speeches need to have the personal touch. They should refer to events and happenings during the school life of the students in question. It might be about a tripabroad or about an important volleyball match they played.  If the speaker is a teacher he or she should speak of adventures shared together over their time at that Elementary School.

Obviously such speeches should include a welcome to the parents of the children graduating.  They should be light-hearted in tone because after all you are celebrating. The students should be told that the celebration is for and about them. You should mention how proud their school is of them and how you know they will be a credit to you whatever new school they attend.

Elementary School speeches should reflect the fact that young children believe that wonderful things can happen. They should encourage them to believe in their hopes and dreams. They should speak of working hard to make those dreams come true.

Such children might also be a little apprehensive about the future, about leaving friends behind as they move on. Such speeches should be reassuring and comforting painting a picture of what is going to happen when they go on to their new school. Thespeeches should clarify the fact that there will be someone there to guide them and show them the ropes.

Teachers often have a great bond with elementary students and their Elementary School speechesshould reflect this fact. The students should know that they can always go back to their old school for advice or guidance because someone who has known you as a child will know your capabilities and understand your worries. They should be always made to feel that they will be welcome back to their Elementary School.   In fact you can make them laugh when you tell them they might even come visiting when they become President.

Above all, Elementary graduation speeches should paint pictures.  You might compare their move to that of someone at a certain stage in a race or to an actor who has a certain  part in a play where he/she have yet to learn their lines and moves.  Elementary School speechesshould end with a blessing or good luck wish.

Using The Concept Of “machine” To Teach Algebraic Concepts To Elementary School Students

The ideas presented in this article came about as a response to a perfectly awful third grade text book lesson which my wife was forced to present when she was student teaching. The lesson was intended (I suppose) as an introduction to algebraic concepts.

Without any motivation or other rationale, the text introduced a problem:

If 3 × X = 12 what is X?

This was followed by a description of the standard algebraic procedure for solving the problem:

  • Divide both sides of the equation by three;
  • “Cancel” the “3”s on the left hand side;
  • Divide 12 by 3;
  • Conclude that X = 4.

This procedure was described by a sequence of diagrams, each showing the next step in the transformation. The authors of the text were clearly under no illusion that a typical or even advanced third grader would understand the meaning and justification behind an algebraic derivation. The level of abstraction required to understand the concept of variable, the meaning of an equation, the idea that equations are assertions which can be transformed to logically equivalent assertions and the strategy for deriving a solution is light years beyond anything a normal third grade student has encountered or could possibly understand. The goal was simply to teach the students a mechanical procedure in the way one might program a computer.

In attempting to recast this lesson in a form that might be meaningful and even valuable to third grade students the challenge is how to make the concepts involved concrete. When a child thinks of a (whole) number she can imagine a basket of apples or a stack of pennies. When a child thinks of addition the child can think combining baskets of apples or stacks of pennies. But what interpretation can a young child give to an equation or a variable?

We start by considering how we might visualize a variable and an equation involving a variable in terms of some kind of more or less concrete object that would make sense to an eight year old. A variable is a kind of object, which can be assigned different values. An equation involving a variable is a statement which depending on the value we assign to the variable may be either true or false. We may thus think of an equation as a kind of question answering machine. This machine accepts a number, which is to be assigned as the “value” of the variable, and the machine answers the question: “Is the equation true when this value is assigned to the variable?” We can picture such a machine operating as in the following diagrams.

The machine has a part we have labeled the input where values are placed and a part called the output where answers are produced. We will call machines that produce an output when presented with an input, Input/Output Machines. When presented with an input value, the machine illustrated above, which we have labeled “3 × X = 12?” substitutes that value for the variable X in the equation 3 × X = 12, evaluates whether the resulting equation is true or false, and outputs the result. Thus when we enter the input “3,” the machine substitutes “3” for “X” in the equation “3 × X = 12,” resulting in the equation “3 × 3 = 12” which, when we substitute the value of 3 × 3 for “3 × 3,” gives the equation “9 = 12” which evaluates to “False” which is then output. Using this machine, we can restate the original problem as: “Find an input for the “3 × X = 12?” machine which causes this machine to output True.

While this machine may help students to visualize the meaning of an equation as a machine that outputs True or False, it seems questionable whether young students would understand the manipulations involved in substituting a value for a variable or substituting values for expressions as when we substitute “9” for “3 × 3.” Further it seems likely that the interpretation of an equation not as an assertion but as a predicate, i.e. an expression that may be “true” or “false” would be confusing to students. We can simplify the problem in two ways. First we can get rid of the equation by considering the following Input/Output machine.

Here we’ve replaced the equation, “3 × X = 12?,” by the expression “3 × X”. Like the equation machine, when presented with a value as input, this machine substitutes the value for the variable and evaluates the expression and outputs the value. The difference is that in this case the value of the expression is a number rather than “true” or “false.” For example, when presented with input “3”, this machine produces the value “9”. In terms of this machine we can restate our problem as “Find an input value which causes the ‘3 × X’ machine to output 12.”

While we have eliminated the need to interpret an equation as a predicate, it still requires the student to make sense out of the concept of a variable and the process of substituting into a symbolic expression and simplifying. So our final step in the reduction of the problem is to eliminate the use of the variable. After all, what does the “3 × X” machine do? It takes whatever input you present to it and multiplies by 3. We can describe this without using a variable. We simply call this the “Times 3” machine (or if you prefer the “Times by 3” or perhaps the “tripling” machine.)

Now our problem can be stated entirely in terms of the Times 3 machine: find a number which when input to the Times 3 machine produces output 12.

No doubt some would argue that in this formulation we have “watered down” the lesson precisely in that we have eliminated the use of a variable, the notion of an equation as a predicate, and the symbolic manipulation of expressions. Our counter to this has two elements. The first is that even if a typical third grader can be programmed to carry out these manipulations their meaning, justification, and value are totally beyond his capabilities. Put differently, if a student can make sense of variables, equations as predicates, and symbolic manipulation then she is actually ready to learn algebra “for real” and as far as we know no one is seriously proposing algebra as a standard for the third grade curriculum. Our second point is that, as we hope to make clear in the following discussion, we have replaced notions that are beyond the ken of a third grader with concepts and principles the student can understand and which are ultimately far more fundamental and important to the student’s mathematical development.

These concepts include that of a mathematical function and relations and operations on functions as represented here by an “input/output machine.” The significance of these concepts cannot be overstated and given their importance, time spent developing the student’s intuition about them is time well spent. For this purpose we need not be restricted to numeric or even mathematical machines.

We have experience with many examples of objects or systems that behave like input/output machines. A vending machine provides a good example. The input to the machine is money and the output is candy or whatever products the vending machine is vending. Real vending machines are a little more complicated than this of course because the input is usually the money plus an item selection, which we may make by pressing a button or pulling a knob. We could picture such a machine this way.

There is no problem to extending the notion of input/output machine to allow multiple inputs. There is also no problem allowing input/output machines to have more than one output. For example, we might have an additional output for change.

A factory is another example of a kind of input/output machine. The inputs are the raw materials and the outputs are the finished goods. The factory below takes cocoa and sugar as inputs and outputs chocolate bars.

Of course, an input/output machine needn’t be made of brick or metal. A person baking cupcakes can be thought of as an input/output machine. The inputs are the ingredients (flour and so on) and the output is a cupcake. A leaf can be thought of as an input/output machine that takes sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide and outputs sugar and oxygen. An animal can be thought of as an input/output machine that takes oxygen and sugar as input and outputs water and carbon dioxide. You can even think of yourself putting on your shoes and socks as an input/output machine. The input is you in bare feet, a pair of socks and a pair of shoes and the output is you with your socks and shoes on.

The really interesting and important thing about input/output machines is that sometimes you can take two or more input/output machines and connect them together to make a new kind of input/output machine. As an example, suppose I sell machines and I’ve got two kinds of machines. One is a cupcake-making machine that makes cupcakes from mix. The other is a chocolate frosting machine that takes whatever you give it, (dogs, cats, kids, bats, balls, cookies, fruit, whatever!) and puts chocolate frosting on it.

One day I get a call from someone who wants a special machine that makes chocolate frosted cupcakes. I say, “Well we have a machine that makes cupcakes and we have a machine that puts chocolate frosting on things but I don’t have a machine that makes a chocolate frosted cupcake. Maybe the chief machine maker (the CMM) can figure out a way to make one?” The CMM says, “No problem, we’ll take a cupcake maker and a chocolate froster and connect the output of the cupcake maker to the input of the chocolate froster and we’ll put the whole thing in a box and call it the Chocolate Frosted Cupcake Maker.”

So now I’m selling three machines: my cupcake maker, my chocolate froster, and my chocolate frosted cupcake maker. After a while I add a “Cherry Topping” machine to my product line. The cherry topper takes whatever you put in and puts a cherry on top.

Things are going along well and then one day I get a call from a customer who wants a machine that will make a chocolate frosted cupcake with a cherry on top. I don’t make one so I go to my chief machine designer. He says, “No problem” and designs a machine consisting of a chocolate frosted cupcake-making machine connected to a cherry-topping machine with a box around the whole thing. So the contraption looks like this.

The operation of connecting two input/output machines is also called composition, as in forming a “composite” or “compound”. As any mathematician will agree, composition is the most fundamental operation in mathematics. Composition is what allows us to build arbitrarily complex assemblies, concepts, and theories from simple components. It is also the basis of logical deduction: if A can be derived from B and C can be derived from B then C can be derived from A. Not surprisingly, the most fundamental principle of mathematics concerns composition. We can describe this principle using a dishwasher.

As illustrated below, our dishwasher is built out of three component machines: a washer, a rinser, and a dryer.

The dishwasher is a machine that takes dirty plates as input and produces clean dry plates as output. Looking inside the dishwasher we see that the dirty plate first enters a washer which produces a clean but soapy plate as output. The soapy dish then enters the “rinser” which produces the clean but wet plate as output and the wet plate is then put through the dryer that produces the final output: a clean dry plate.

There are a number of different ways of organizing the components of the dishwasher. One way is just to view them as three separate elements of the dishwasher. Another, illustrated below, is to associate the Rinser with the Washer and view the pair as forming a Washer-Rinser machine which is then connected to a dryer.

Another way of viewing the components is to associate the Rinser with the Dryer to form a Rinser-Dryer machine and connect the Washer to the Rinser-Dryer.

Now we ask the question: does the way we view the organization of the components:

  • A washer connected to a rinser connected to a dryer or
  • A washer-rinser connected to a dryer or
  • A washer connected to a rinser-dryer

make any difference to the behavior of the dishwasher? To answer this question, consider the behavior of the dishwasher from the point of view of the plate. No matter how we view the organization of the components, all the plate “sees” is that it first gets washed by the washer and then gets rinsed by the rinser and then get dried by the drier. So the results are the same. This is the most fundamental principle of mathematics. It is sometimes called the associative law of composition. It says that no matter how we associate the components in a composition of input/output machines, for example associating the rinser with the washer vs. associating the rinser with the dryer, the behavior of the composite machine is the same.

The associative principle might lead us to ask whether the order in which machines appear in a composition matters. The answer is a definite yes! Consider a composite made up of two clothing machines: One accepts a person as input and puts on underwear and the second takes a person and puts on outerwear. If we connect the machines in one order we get a machine that properly dresses a person with underwear underneath and outerwear outside. If we connect the machines in the opposite order then we get machine that puts our underwear over our outerwear. These machines are definitely not equivalent. So in general, when connecting machines the order matters!

The crucial concept for solving problems like the one in our lesson, is the concept of inversion which we will represent by an “Un-machine.” Let’s consider an example.
Billy and Sally like to send love notes to one another in class. Since they don’t want other people to read them, they use a secret code. The way the code works is that each letter in the message is replaced by the letter that comes after it in the alphabet. So, “A” is replaced by “B”, “B” is replaced by “C”, and so on. Of course, “Z” have a following letter so we replace it with “A.” To decode the message we do just the opposite: replace “B” with “A”, “C” with “B”, …, “Z” with “Y”, and finally “A” with “Z”. We can picture this process in terms of an “alphabet circle” as illustrated below. The coding process substitutes the next letter in the clockwise direction and the decoding process substitutes the next letter in the counter clockwise direction..

When Billy sends the message, he codes it using the coding method, and when Sally receives it, she decodes it using the decoding method. We can visualize this in terms of input/output machines as in the following diagram.

So, what is done by the coding machine is undone by the decoding machine, so if I feed the output of the Coding machine into the decoding machine I get my input back. Put another way, if I connect the coding machine to the decoding machine I get a machine that outputs exactly what you put into it. For example we put “I love you” in and we got “I love you” out. A machine whose output is always identical to the input in is called an Identity machine. A telephone provides another example of an identity machine.

When you speak into the phone, a part of the phone called the microphone takes the sound as input and produces an electrical signal as output. The electrical signals are then sent to the phone of the person you are talking to where another machine called a speaker takes the electrical signal as input and produces the same sound for the other person. Again we have an example of a machine, in this case the speaker, which undoes what another machine, the microphone, does so that when the two are connected we get an identity machine for sounds. We will call a machine which undoes what another machine does an unmachine for the first machine. Thus the decoder is an unmachine for the coder and the speaker is an unmachine for the microphone.

If we have an unmachine for a machine then we can answer questions of the form: “What was the input that produced this output?” by feeding the output into the unmachine. Consider the “Add 2” machine. You put a number in and it outputs the number + 2. So if you input 5, it will output 7, and if you input 12 it will output 14. Suppose the output is 23 and we want to find the input? We can solve this problem if we can find an Un-Add 2 machine. How do we undo adding 2? Let’s look at some examples where we know the input.

So when we input 3 to Un-Add 2 we get 1 and when we input 4 we get 2 and when we input 11 we get 9. After we look at enough examples or perhaps we see immediately because our teacher explained subtraction that way, we realize the way you undo adding 2 is to subtract 2. So the Un-Add 2 machine is the Subtract 2 machine and feeding 23 into the subtract 2 machine gives us the answer 21. After a few more problems we realize that the way you undo adding any number is by subtracting that number. In mathematical terms addition of a number and subtraction of that number are inverse operations. In the same way we can discover that division by a number is the unmachine for multiplication by the number and thus we can solve problems like the one we started with.

To make things more interesting let’s combine multiplication and addition. Suppose the result of multiplying some number by 6 and then adding 14 is 56. What is the number?

So our problem is how to undo “Times by 6 and then adding 14”. After computing the value of times by 6 and then adding 14 for some different input we realize that a times by 6 and add 14 machine can be built by connecting a “Times 6” to an “Add 14” machine.

Now we know that “Divide by 6” undoes “Times 6” and “Subtract 14” undoes “Add 14”. Is there some way we can use these unmachines to build an unmachine for the composite?
Let’s consider a more familiar example: a two stage “dressing machine.” As illustrated in the first diagram below, the first component puts on my underwear and the second component puts on my pants and shirt. The second diagram shows the Un-dressing machine. It has two components: one that undoes putting pants and shirt and the other undoes putting on underwear. But notice that the order of the unmachines is the reverse of the order of the machines. If the last thing you did getting dressed was to put on your pants and shirt then the first thing you do in getting undressed is to take off your pants and shirt.

This is a general principle that works for all input/output machines, arithmetical or otherwise. If un-A is an unmachine for A and un-B is an un-machine for B then un-B connected to un-A is the unmachine for A connected to B. This is illustrated in the diagram below. An input “x” enters the A-B machine where it is first passed through A which generates an output “a” and then “a” is passed through B to produce an output “b.” If we then feed “b” into Un-B-Un-A, “b” is first passed through Un-B which must give us “a” back, and then “a” is passed through Un-A which must give us “x” back

Thus to undo Times 6 and then Add 14 we first subtract 14, to undo adding 14, and then divide by 6 to undo multiplying by 6. Feeding 56 to this unmachine we have

Indeed, 7 × 6 + 14 = 42 + 14 = 56.

In this article we have barely scratched the surface of what can be explained at an elementary level using concepts based on the notion of machine. In addition to using these concepts to prepare students for more advanced areas like algebra they can be used to provide a much deeper understanding of the meaning and use of numbers and operations on numbers. We will explore these ideas in a future article.

How to Become an Elementary School Teacher

If you’ve thought about becoming a teacher, one of the most important decisions you may have to make is which level of teaching suits you the best. Elementary, secondary, and post-secondary teaching all have very different characteristics and requirements, and shifting tracks once you get started would be likely to require that you go back to school. Therefore, your career path may be smoother if you choose carefully at the beginning, and focus your educational preparation accordingly.

Suppose you are interested in teaching very young children. In that case, you may want to be aware of the special characteristics that distinguish elementary school teachers, and how you would become an elementary school teacher yourself.

Distinguishing Characteristics of Elementary School Teachers

There are some characteristics that distinguish good teachers at all levels: a solid understanding of the subject matter; good communication skills, energy, creativity, leadership ability, and patience. But what are some of the particular characteristics that distinguish elementary school teachers?

In many ways, those characteristics can be defined by some of the special requirements of the job, such as:

  • A good base of generalist knowledge. Rather than specializing in a particular subject, elementary school teachers often teach a range of subjects to a given class or age group.
  • A fundamental understanding of child psychology. Elementary school children are just learning to learn, and teachers need to be able to perceive how different children are motivated, and what factors may be inhibiting some of them.
  • A basic knowledge of child development. Many learning disabilities are not spotted until a child is in elementary school, and the earlier a teacher can help identify special needs, the more can be done for the child.
  • Sensitivity to non-verbal cues. Small children have often not yet learned how to express themselves clearly, so a sensitivity to non-verbal signals can be the key to communication.
  • A tactful nature for dealing with parents. Parents are an especially important part of the learning experience at the elementary school level, and being able to communicate in a clear yet non-threatening way is a useful attribute.

In addition to the above broad range of skills, there are specific educational credentials needed to become an elementary school teacher.

Elementary School Teacher Education

Although requirements for elementary school teacher education vary from state to state, here are three common elements of most programs:

  • A bachelor’s degree. This would include both a broad background in general studies and specific education in teaching-related subjects such as classroom techniques and child psychology.
  • Student-teaching experience. Education degree programs commonly include a requirement for a student-teaching internship.
  • State certification. Public schools in all 50 states require teachers to be licensed, with the license often specific to the age group being taught. Private schools are less likely to require licensure.

Employment Outlook

Employment growth for teachers is expected to be about typical for the economy as a whole, but it is projected to be especially strong at the elementary school level. This occupation is less cyclical than most, so overall the job market is both promising and stable. Median income levels are above the national average.

Teaching is not an occupation for someone looking to get rich. However, for the personally enriching experience of helping children get a good start along the educational path, it can be an ideal choice.

Williamsburg Northside a Brooklyn Elementary School Introduces physical and health education classes

Williamsburg Northside Lower School, a Brooklyn elementary school, offers various health and physical education classes for its students. According to the school, the purpose of the physical education program is to empower the Brooklyn elementary school’s students to sustain regular, lifelong physical activity as a foundation for a healthy, productive, and fulfilling life.

Becoming a physically educated person is a developmental process that begins in early childhood and continues throughout one’s life. The physical education program offers fundamental movement skills in the area of body awareness, spatial orientation, relationships, object manipulation, games, and sports. Principles of good sportsmanship, as well as respectful competition and safety in the gymnasium are emphasized throughout the year. These programs vary according to age groups and grades.

Kindergarten:

The program emphasizes body and spatial awareness, locomotor and non-locomotor skills. Its aim is for children to feel enjoyment and confidence in themselves and their abilities. Goals and activities include:

  • Locomotor skills—hopping, skipping, jumping
  • Non-manipulative skills—balancing, rolling, stretching
  • Manipulative skill—dribbling, volleying, collecting
  • Cooperative games
  •  The ability to demonstrate healthful practices such as washing hands, covering one’s mouth when coughing or sneezing, and brushing and flossing teeth.

First grade:

First grade builds on the skills already learned, with a greater emphasis on manipulative skills. Students of the Brooklyn elementary are also given an opportunity to explore stationary and moving balance as well as health and fitness concepts. Goals and activities include:

  • Experience with manipulative skills such as throwing, catching, volleying, and dribbling
  • Striking with implements—rackets, bats, hockey sticks
  • Introduction to health-and-fitness topics such as the food guide and physical activity pyramids
  • Understand how behaviors such as food selection, exercise, and rest affect growth and development.

Second Grade:

Second grade involves increased interaction between traveling and directions, levels (high, medium, low) and pathways (curved, straight, zigzag). Goals and activities include:

  • Circus arts—juggling, spinning plates
  • Bowling
  • Chasing, fleeing, dodging
  • Kicking and punting
  • The ability to demonstrate the use of interpersonal skills to enhance health

Third Grade:

Third grade builds on the curriculum by working toward demonstrating the mature form of moving in selected combinations of locomotor, non-locomotor, and manipulative skills. Goals include the ability to:

  • Identify movement in terms of effort (how the body moves), space (where the body moves), and relationships (with objects, people or both).
  • Know and apply principles and components of health-related fitness.
  • Begin to demonstrate mature form in various skills.
  • Develop injury prevention and management strategies for personal health.

Fourth Grade:

Although health issues are integrated throughout the elementary years, they are formally discussed beginning in fourth grade.

1)      Motor: Small-sided games—that is, few players per team—are introduced in fourth grade.

Students use cooperation and problem-solving skills to accomplish group or team goals.

Goals include the ability to:

  • Respond to winning and losing with dignity and understanding
  • Experiences with increased interaction between locomotor skills, non-locomotor skills, and manipulative skills
  • Understand strategies related to offense and defense

 

2)      Health: In fourth grade there is a deeper look into the influence of culture, media, technology, and other factors on health. Health is influenced by a variety of factors, including the cultural context as well as media and technology. Students of the Brooklyn elementary school use their critical thinking and problem-solving skills to analyze, evaluate, and interpret the influence of these factors on health. The goals include:

 

  • Describing how culture influences personal health behaviors
  • Explaining how information from school and family influences health
  • Describing ways technology can influence health
  • Explaining how media influences thoughts, feelings, and health behaviors

Fifth Grade:

1)      Motor: Fifth graders begin identifying muscle groups when performing specific actions and applying movement concepts using speed variables. Goals include the ability to:

  • Recognize and communicate feedback
  • Understand fitness components related to cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular strength and endurance and flexibility
  • Understand, respect, and appreciate individuals on the basis of their unique characteristics as well as their contributions to a group.

2)      Health: In fifth grade, the students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of the five aspects of health —mental, emotional, physical, social, and spiritual—and the wellness spectrum—a scale showing possible health conditions from premature death to optimal health—and how they relate to overall health. The Brooklyn Elementary students also learn about the negative impact chemical substances can have on health. The program discusses tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs, as well as describes the differences between helpful and potentially harmful substances. Objectives include:

  • Identifying ways to cope with or seek assistance as necessary when confronted with situations involving alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs
  • Describing the cycle of growth and development in humans and other animal species
  • Using goal-setting and decision-making skills to enhance health

Online Biotechnology Degrees and Courses

The internet, a vast reservoir of data, provides a diversity of information, much of which is provided by colleges and universities. Many academic institutions are responding to the growing need for flexible alternatives to meeting educational needs online (while continuing to manage career, family and home life) by offering a diversity of programs and courses (often utilizing video and video conferencing to assist in doing so).

These are some accredited academic institutions that provide online instruction–distance education– for those seeking to earn distance degrees, individuals completing college and those taking courses for career growth.

American Public University
http://www.apu.apus.edu/index.htm
Bachelor of Science in Space Studies — The Space Studies program offered by American Public University is a unique blend of the study of space science, management, operations, economy, and national security. Students in this program will take a general program first. After completing the core courses, students will take four courses that cover space station, satellite, space craft or transportation systems, as well as courses in planetary and space explorations, space weapons, space weather and astronomy.

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies — This degree is for students interested in environmental policy and analysis as well as environment management including stewardship of natural resources, pollution management, fish and wildlife management, and hazardous materials.

Undergraduate Certificate in Space Studies — The certificate in Space Studies provides a firm foundation in knowledge areas essential to the study of space: astronomy, space flight/exploration (past, current and future), primary industry and government participants, and basic orbital mechanics.

Ashford University
http://degrees.ashford.edu/
Ashford University’s programs are designed for working adults and those with uncompleted degrees.

Programs include:

BA/Social Science – Biology
BA/Social Science – Environmental Science
BA/Health Care- Biology

California State University Channel Islands (CSUCI) Extended University
http://www.csuci.edu/exed/index.htm

Online Biotechnology Courses

These online courses were developed through a three campus collaboration involving San Jose State University, CSU San Marcos, and CSU Channel Islands.

Biol 601 Seminar in Biotechnology and Bioinformatics — Latest Technological Developments (Winter 2010)
Stem Cell Research (Summer 2010)
Biol 503 Biotechnology and Law Regulation — Individual and organizational responsibility in R&D and commercial aspects of biotechnology. Topics include: intellectual property, privacy, government and industrial regulation, liability, ethics, and policy responses to societal concerns in the U.S. and abroad. Case studies involving gene therapy, cloning, and biomaterials in the medical and health sector, and farming and crop modification in the agricultural sector will be explored in detail.
Biol 227T Pharmacology and Toxicology — Principles of pharmacology, especially as related to the pharmaceutical industry and clinical applications.
Biol 500 Introduction to Biopharmaceutical Productions — An introduction to biopharmaceutical production systems and processes.
Binf 500 DNA & Protein Sequence Analysis — This course will introduce the computational aspects of biological inference from nucleic acid and protein sequences.

Biol 516 Clinical Trials and Quality Assurance — An introduction to the foundational knowledge and skills necessary to successfully conduct clinical trials for new drugs, biologics, and medical devices, including in vitro diagnostics.

For Program and Course Schedule and Registration Information:

Phone: 805.437.2748
E-mail: exed@csuci.edu

Colorado Technical University Online
http://www.coloradotech.edu/ctu-online/
Colorado Technical reports that whether you are an experienced professional seeking to retain your competitive edge, a degree holder ready for the challenge of graduate school or someone preparing to enter the career world, that it has the program and the learning style that works for you (B.A and M.A. degrees in Info Technology, health and medicine, science and technology.

Programs include:

Associate of Science in Surgical Technology
Associate of Applied Science in Radiologic Technology
Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Technology — Advanced Clinical Modalities
Master of Business Administration – Environmental and Social Sustainability
Doctor of Management — Environmental and Social Sustainability

Columbia Southern University
http://www.columbiasouthern.edu/
Undergraduate Certificate in Environmental Management — CSU certificate programs deliver extensive, specialized training. Courses are designed to offer students the planning, analysis, and decision-making techniques they need to compete in today’s evolving business climate. Course offerings include Environmental Law, Environmental Science, Environmental Assessment, Air Quality, Waste Management, Hazardous Waste Management, Prevention, Environmental Strategies, Environmental Technology, and Hazardous Waste Regulation.

Continuing Education

• Undergraduate Certificate in Occupational Safety and Health
• Graduate Certificate in Occupational Safety and Health
• Undergraduate Certificate in Environmental Management
• BS – Environmental Management

Drexel University Online
http://www.drexel.com/
Drexel’s  programs and e-learning method ensure that you will receive the same Drexel University education online, with no commuting, fixed class hours, or career interruption. Its course offerings include:

Post-Bachelor’s Certificate in Clinical Trials Research
Certificate of Study in Clinical Research
Certificate in Healthcare Informatics
Certificate in Epidemiology & Biostatistics

Florida Hospital College of Health Sciences
http://www.fhchs.edu/
Earn your Radiologic Sciences degree at home. Everything you need to earn your Radiologic Sciences degree is delivered to your home or available anytime, anywhere via online learning in the virtual classroom. Program:

Bachelor of Science in Radiological Sciences

University of Florida-Distance Learning
http://www.distancelearning.ufl.edu/
Working Professional Doctor of Pharmacy
The University of Florida’s Non-Traditional Pharm.D. program was developed for working professionals who are looking to stay relevant and expand their career potential. This program is designed to help create expert clinicians versed in the safe and effective use and distribution of medications to patients.

How to get a TESOL certificate

If you have been following job opportunities closely, then you already know that there are a large number of jobs being advertised for teaching English, particularly in parts of Asia and Europe. If you are a native speaker, you may be considering the opportunity actively. But, going to a strange place to work at something that you are not trained to do is a daunting task. Gaining a TESOL certificate can help you in many ways. Not only does it prepare you to handle the roles and functions of a teacher effectively, it will also equip you with all the necessary information to help you form your expectations. In short, a TESOL certificate prepares you for your job in every way.

There are many ways in which an interested candidate may obtain TESOL certification. So, what should you choose?

The most popular method is the online certificate course. Online certification has a number ofadvantages and disadvantages. One major problem is the inability to get immediate help from teachers. Students of an online program cannot benefit from group study. Thus, they cannot enjoy meeting new people or gain new ideas. If time and money is not a constraint, you might want to consider an on-site course to obtain the TESOL certificate.

Many courses are being offered in various countries like Australia, UK, New Zealand, the US and a number of countries in Asia. These courses are generally intensive coaching classes that take place at predetermined locations on scheduled dates and times. On-site courses may be inconvenient for working people or students who need to attend classes regularly. On-site courses are also quite expensive, putting them out of the reach of many people. As a general rule, online courses cost less than $600 and on-site courses cost you approximately $1,500. Beware of any course that charges you more.

Sometimes, local universities and colleges also offer the TESOL certification course. You do not have to be a student of the University or college to participate in their course. The downside of these courses is that they do not offer you anything over and above pure English teaching skills. For instance, you cannot expect to receive any information regarding job opportunities or any guidance for the preparation of your resume. Most of these local universities also do not have branches in different locations. So, there is no opportunity to go to a foreign country to do the TESOL certification course.

For people who are interested in getting acquainted their destination country before they start work, teach and travel programs offer the ideal opportunity. In these programs, the TESOL certification course is held in a foreign country, where the company that is offering the training will also provide you with board and meals. The fee associated with this program varies from country to country, and the facilities provided. Such a program is a great option if you want to get acquainted with the culture and tradition of the foreign country before you actually start teaching. It also gives you an opportunity to assess and evaluate the market and search for suitable vacancies as you are learning.

A TESOL certificate is fast becoming the standard qualification for teaching English abroad. Therefore, it is best that you explore the above and make up your mind regarding the method you follow for obtaining the certificate.

How To Obtain A HIPAA Certificate

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act has been developed by the federal government of USA and is directed towards healthcare professionals such as doctors, with an aim to protect patient’s private information. It extends its control to other healthcare workers such as insurers, healthcare companies, lab technicians, healthcare managers, medical data transcriptionists, lawyers, staffing agencies and home medical suppliers, who have access to patient’s information. Many companies offer HIPAA Certificate after successful completion of HIPAA training and testing. But if you’re looking for low cost but quality HIPAA training, HIPAA Exams is the best choice available in the market.

How To Obtain A HIPAA Certificate?

HIPAA Exams has been providing quality HIPAA training including HIPAA Security, HIPAA Awareness (privacy) and ARRA/ HITECH Act of 2009/2010 since 2004. In order to obtain a HIPPA Certificate, the healthcare professionals need to take a HIPAA course followed by a HIPAA test. For this, you need to buy an HIPAA training program and go through it. A study guide is also provided with HIPAA course. It contains real life scenarios and case studies for developing a better understanding in those who are taking this course. HIPAA training program can be completed in one to two hours easily. However, you can take your own time as it is not mandatory to finish it in two hours.  Once you’re through with the course, you need to take a test and can print the certificate immediately upon completion.

What Does HIPAA Certification Program Include?

HIPAA Exams provide the most comprehensive course that includes basic information about HIPAA, insurance reform, the administrative simplifications and accountability, standards for electronic transaction, privacy rule, security rule, HIPAA rules and their interpretations, HIPAA compliance, HIPAA penalties for non-compliance and implications of non-compliance.

The course also includes Privacy standards, administrative requirements of privacy, protecting policy, individual patent rights, notice, consent, authorization and disclosure exceptions to privacy. Additionally, it also includes security rule, administrative safeguards, technical and physical safeguards, security rule standard, security management process, information access management, security breach incident procedures, business associate contracts, workstation use and device and media controls.

In addition to this, HIPAA course also covers HIPAA implementation, FAQs, links to actual HIPAA rules, standards and interpretations, ARRA/ HITECH 2009/2010, overview of changes in rules, enforcement of business associates, individual privacy rights and PHI scale exclusions.

How To Buy HIPAA Certificate Program?

In order to buy a HIPAA Certificate program, all you need to do is to visit the website and sign up. HIPAA Exam offers you web-based HIPAA training program at very low prices. It offers three month access and unlimited free support with instant certificate printing facility. The best part is that it does not charge any set-up and recurring fees. You just need to enter the number of HIPAA license you wish to purchase. You can purchase this course for single as well as multiple users. Right after buying, you’ll have an instant access to the most comprehensive and easy-to-understand HIPAA course. You can now review the material take final test and print your HIPAA Certificate.

HIPAA Exam offers a complete and full-fledged web-based HIPAA training program with a facility to print your HIPAA Certificate right after taking final HIPAA test.

Importance of Environmental Safety and Compliance Certification

Environmental safety and Compliance is an inevitable discipline for safeguarding and keeping the environment healthy. Safety and Compliance is not only important for the environment, in fact the workers associated with industries and especially the ones who are subjected to hazardous chemicals requires equal dimensions of safety measures. Environmental safety and compliance should be a combined effort to keep both the environment and people safe and healthy.The environmental safety and compliance issues are raised globally. The need for improving and maintaining the environment has been the main targeted issue that is raising more and more discussions. The diligence in understanding the importance of health and safety of environment has developed  programs to train and certify professionals on environmental safety and compliance. The main objective of such programs is to make the professionals competent enough with adequate knowledge and skills who can be resourceful to organizations.

Organization can benefit from certified environmental safety and compliance professionals on achieving their goals and possible ways to implement the knowledge and skills at multiple levels. Certification program on Environmental safety and compliance trains gives in depth training to the professionals. Getting certified in such programs can make the professionals understand the importance of this discipline, what are the ways of applying their skills on protecting the environment,  future career prospects of environmental safety and compliance.

Certified professionals will get better openings to work and find lucrative opportunities in Environmental Safety and Compliance sector. They will definitely have an edge over other non-certified professionals because of many reasons such as their in depth knowledge in applying the useful tools in this domain. With their adequate knowledge on environmental safety and compliance, professionals can provide training to other professionals working in industries and also to students. Apart from getting skilled in practical applications of environmental safety and compliance, professionals will also learn the management systeminvolved in this domain which is equally important.

Certified professionals can also help organizations and industries in understanding and assessing environmental health and safety compliance. One important section of this program is safety, fire and rescue process. Professionals having knowledge on the key aspects of safety, fire and rescue process and the equipments involved is valuable for any organization. Professionals also get trained in personal protective equipments use and other important health and safety equipments.

Although there has been attempts to bring into notice the environmental issues, there has been decline in bringing out positive and productive results. Key is solving the issues both internally and externally. The emergence of certificate programs such as environmental safety and compliance and various other environmental certification programs is proving to be very useful for organizations in minimizing the harmful impact on environmental elements.

Art Courses For Kids And Their Importance

If we particularly talk about adult art education offerings, then there are so many parkdistricts, community colleges, art schools and adult education centers to offer such education to the individuals. Many art institutes offer different courses and programs for both beginners and armatures of all levels.

You may find out that your kid has a great interest in the art. So, if you really wish to make them happy, there are so many standalone courses available that are either for personal enrichment or can also provide a credit towards a degree or a full certificate program. There are many such institutes that offer full certificate programs and degree programs in different areas like:

  • Fine arts
  • Drawing
  • Painting
  • Sketching
  • Molding
  • Graphic design
  • Photography
  • Web design

From associate’s to master’s degrees, you can get all kinds of degrees in arts. In art courses Melbourne, the topics covered are photography, sculpture, painting, drawing and art appreciation. Many of these art courses have hands-on projects to make students learn different types if drawing mediums like drawing, painting or sculpturing their creations. Some students choose photography course to learn camera works along with camera settings and photo editing. These art courses give an opportunity to the students to analyze art and create something unique in art trips.

Students who choose a certificate or degree program in the art may learn different things as a part of their studies. Some of the topics may be studied at the advanced level especially in the degree programs. If you have decided that you want to pursue your career in art, then you need to choose a degree program. Although certificate program is also a good option, but if you know little about the art and its basics, then you should go for the degree program.

If you could see that your 3-year-old kid is showing its creativity on walls or papers, then time has come when you should take a step to make art his life. Many art institutes in Melbourne offer art courses not only for the adults but also for kids, teenagers and also for seniors. They believe that there is no specific age when you can give wings to your interest or dreams. They begin from basic course and make you learn small things that are very important. They make sure that begin from the beginning so that kids get to know each and everything that an artist or art lover should learn. They allow them to let their feelings and thoughts flow on the blank paper. Kids’ drawings help them to learn a lot about them. You decision of choosing an art institute is very important. So, take care of it.

Computer Networking Career Preparation Training Programs and Options

Training opportunities for those looking to enter into a career in computer networking are available through accredited schools, colleges, and degree programs. Students can enroll in a program to begin the training they need to enter into the field ready for a successful career. Enrollment will allow students to pursue a variety of degrees in the specialized are of their choice. Accredited career training can be completed by following a number of steps. Students can find the educational training path that fits their needs and goals and begin the learning process today.

Educational options exist for students to receive the skills and knowledge that are needed to enter into the field. Opportunities include receiving a certificate, or associate, bachelor, master, or doctoral level degree. Training can require different lengths of training based on the level of education the student wishes to pursue.

  • Certificate programs can take several months to one year to complete.
  • Associate degrees require two years of accredited training to earn.
  • Bachelor degree programs can take students four years to complete.
  • Master degrees take an additional two years of study to obtain.
  • Doctoral degree programs typically require an additional four years of training.

Accredited schools and colleges are available to provide students with the degree or certificate training they need to enter into successful careers in computer networking. Studies can consist of various courses that will help to prepare students for the career they dream of.

Coursework and training is provided to help students obtain the knowledge and skills that are needed to succeed in the computer networking industry. Studies will cover topics that relate to the desired career of each individual as well as the level of education being obtained. Studies can allow students to learn:

  • Information Technology
  • Operating Systems
  • Technical Support
  • Computer Programming
  • Software Design
  • Management
  • Network Security

…and a variety of other career related topics. By receiving an accredited education in these subjects, students will be ready to seek out the career of their dreams. Career possibilities are available in a variety of specialized areas.

When looking to obtain the education needed to pursue a career in this field. Students should make sure they enroll in the specialized program that meets their individual goals and needs. Specialized areas of study can allow students to learn computer programming, network engineering, network support, computer network management, network systems, and more. Certificate and degree programs will help students to become network administrators, manager, testers, information technology professionals, network support specialists, and other professions. Accredited training will allow you to gain skills in communication and research to better prepare you for entrance into the workforce.

Accredited computer networking schools and programs are approved by various agencies to provide the best quality educational training available. Agencies like the Higher Learning Commission are approved to fully accredit qualifying educational training programs that meet all requirements. You can begin the path to the career you long for by finding a program, requesting more information, and enrolling today.

DISCLAIMER: Above is a GENERIC OUTLINE and may or may not depict precise methods, courses and/or focuses related to ANY ONE specific school(s) that may or may not be advertised at PETAP.org.

Copyright 2010 – All rights reserved by PETAP.org.

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Wine Jobs Primer – Get Your Viticulture or Enology Degree

Landing a job in the wine industry often times starts with a wine education. Before you get too excited, a wine education does not mean a wine tasting (although it would nice if they did). Many careers in the wine industry require Bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees, or even acertificate of wine knowledge. Further, the colleges or universities that typically offer these programs are mainly located within the largest wine-producing states. However, let’s start with what programs are offered for a Bachelor’s degree and which schools offer them.

Bachelor’s degrees that are typically required in the wine industry are Viticulture or Enology degrees. These programs are intense with a varied science background. Basically, these are programs for the science of wine or winemaking. These degrees will be required if you aspire to one day be a winemaker or a viticulturist (grape grower). If getting dirty in the vineyards or cellar isn’t your style, a few schools offer Business degrees with concentrations in Wine Business. If managing or owning a winery is your future aspiration, this degree would be a perfect stepping stone.

Here are some schools that offer at least one of these programs in this field:

– Washington State University: This school offers a Viticulture/Enology Bachelor’s degree program.

– Cornell University of New York: This university offers a Viticulture/Enology Bachelor’s degree.

– Fresno State College: They offer a Viticulture/Enology Bachelor’s degree, Masters of Science in Viticulture/Enology, and certificates of study in Viticulture/Enology.

– Sonoma State University: This school offers a Wine Business Strategies Bachelor’s degree.

– UC Davis College: This college offers a Viticulture/Enology Bachelor’s degree.

To get into many of these programs, a background in math, chemistry and biology is recommended and preferred.

It goes without saying, but a relatively high GPA (requirements will vary by school) will aid the entrance to one of these schools- especially in those core classes. Further, many of the insiders consider this a “people business” and recommend high interpersonal skills as well as activities to support that fact.

Depending on the wine industry position your heart is set on, it may only require a certificate of knowledge.Certificate programs typically will only take one to two years for completion. These concentrations will vary by school, but examples of possible certificates are wine business, wine marketing, or viticulture/enology.

Many of the same schools that offer Bachelor’s degrees offer certificate programs; they can also be found under community colleges as a stepping stone towards a Bachelor’s. However, here are some schools that offer certificate programs:

– Northwest Wine Academy (through South Seattle Community College): This community college offers certificates in winemaking, wine marketing and sales, and wine and food pairing.

– Walla Walls Community College: This college offers a certificate of wine marketing and management.

Santa Rosa Junior College: This school offers certificates in wine business and marketing, enology, and wine service and hospitality.

Finding and affording a college or certificate program can be a difficult task. Many schools offer financial aid and some offer scholarships, so it is important to do research on all the major schools for deciding on one.

Additionally, it is important to give consideration to which type of degree you wish to study before committing to a school. Some schools only offer Enology programs; others only put forward a wine business curriculum.

Finally, talk to some of the current students in the program. How are they financing their education? How difficult is the program for them? Are they able to work part-time or full-time while attending school? Make sure to find out all relevant information before choosing and applying to a school for your wine education.

Tax Foreclosure Programs: The Scoop on The Secret Certificate

It seems that now they’re popping up all over the web – websites that claim that you can purchase tax delinquent houses for only a few hundred dollars. Here’s one that I stumbled across recently, the website is TheSecretCertificate. This site, very much like the John Beck infomercial, claims that you can “Steal” a house … for just $600 with no mortgage payments. This site shows pictures of houses that were purchased for under $400 and has links to documentation to prove it. The links show the actual treasurer’s deed to the property.

If you check out the links to these deeds you’ll notice that all three of the properties shown are in Oklahoma and that these deeds were issued between 2001 and 2003 for tax liencertificates that were issued in 2001. The assessed value of each of these homes is between 30,000 to 50,000. So this seems like a real good deal.

You can sign up for their 7-day trial program and free video at TheSecretCertificate for a $1.00 donation to charity. And if you do not cancel in 7 days, your credit card will be billed for $97.00 per month thereafter, until you cancel. Now here’s what you’re supposed to get for $97.00 per month: A national list of tax delinquent properties – houses that you can supposedly purchase for pennies on the dollar right now; Contact information for the best states to invest in, and personal mentoring with Ben Bergin.

I tried the 7-day trial and here’s what I found. The trial gives you access to a member site that gives you access to a video lesson each day for 7 days and access to the bonuses mentioned above. I was only able to listen to the first 2 lessons because you are only allowed access to one lesson each day. I wanted to listen to all 7 lessons on my second day in the program because with my schedule, that’s when I had the time to watch the lessons. The site would only allow me to watch the first 2. I found them to be introductory lessons that went into length on what tax liens are and why they’re such a good investment, but there was nothing in these first 2 lessons about how actually to invest in tax liens or how you actually get a house for $600 or less. I cannot comment about lessons 3-7, perhaps all of the good information was in there. If you want to find out you can donate $1.00 to charity (it’s a worthwhile cause) and see for yourself.

I also checked out what was supposed to be a national list of tax delinquent properties. Here’s what I found. When I checked the list for the county that I live in, Monroe County, PA, it turned up 7 properties. Now I know there are hundreds of delinquent tax properties in my county. There are a few hundred on the list for judicial tax sale that coming up in a few weeks as well as hundreds more that are not even scheduled for tax sale yet. I was only able to check out 4 of the properties listed because 3 of them only listed a P.O. address and without an owners name or other property qualifier, there was no way to identify the property. Of the 4 that I was able to check, only one was actually delinquent and the delinquent amount was different that the amount that was listed on the web site.

Then I tried looking at the delinquent list for San Francisco County California. The tax sale had just taken place within a day or so of me getting this information from the site, so you would think that the properties that were in the tax sale would be on this list. That’s not what I found. This time there was a substantial amount of properties on the list. But I didn’t recognize any of them as properties that were in the tax sale. In my estimation this is an old and outdated delinquent tax sale list that is no help to the investor.

Next I looked at the contact list for what were supposed to be the best states to invest in. Here’s what I found: Only tax deed states were listed, but some deed states were not mentioned at all, there was false information about redemption periods for many of the states, including the state that I live in. Hawaii and California were both among the 5 states that arebest to invest in. I don’t know why, since California is a very competitive deed state and even though Hawaii is a redeemable deed state the interest is only 12% per annum for deeds that redeem.

I made sure that I cancelled my membership before I was billed the monthly charge of $97.00, so I can’t comment on the personal mentoring that was supposed to come withmembership. I did find that they were very accommodating and did cancel my membershipwithout billing me. So if you want to donate $1.00 to charity and check it out for yourself, go ahead. It does seem to be a legitimate business. And I’m sure that they have good information for some states, they just didn’t have good information for the state that I live and invest in.

Biotechnology Certificate and Training Programs Offered by Colleges and Universities

Certificate and Training Programs

Many community and junior colleges, as well as some colleges and universities, are offering short-term biotechnology training and certificate programs, A. A. and B. A. degrees. Some universities are also offering graduate certification programs. The following include some of the institutions that are offering training and certificate programs:

California State University, Hayward (CSUH) –Biotechnology Certificate Program (BCP) — The Biotechnology Certificate Program (BCP) was established at CSUH in 1986 to meet the personnel requirements of the rapidly expanding Bay Area biotechnology industry. The program was among the first in California to offer an integrated series of courses in the molecular life sciences leading to a certificate. CSUH is presenting two new programs of study in Bioinformatics and Regulatory Affairs. The Bioinformatics program is offered in the evening and the Regulatory Affairs program is completely on-line and is offered in association with San Diego State University.

California State University, Los Angeles– Biotechnology (Post-baccalaureate) Certificate Program– This post-baccalaureate certificate program provides intensive theoretical and laboratory training in the techniques and application of genetic engineering and related technologies. It is meant for students who have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent in the biological or biochemical sciences but who have little or no experience in genetic engineering.

Columbia University Teachers College — Certificate in Health Disparities Reduction– This online or in-person certificate program in Health Disparities Reduction is offered jointly through the Department of Behavioral Studies Program in Health Education and the Center for Educational Outreach and Innovation at Teachers College, Columbia University, This program is for professionals with varied backgrounds who share an interest in being exposed to knowledge, attitudes/beliefs, and skills seen as central to the task of working to reduce disparities in health. Building upon their area-specific or pre-existing professional and academic preparation; those admitted will hold a minimum of a BA or BS degree. These professionals include but are not limited to allied healthcare professionals, social workers, health and related counseling professionals, researchers, teachers, doctors and health and school administrators working in an urban setting in particular, as well as others nationwide who are seeking distance learning opportunities.

Indiana University School of Medicine–The Graduate Certificate in Biotechnology is designed to train technicians for working in health-related industrial research laboratories, including those at the IU School of Medicine. Students also have access to IUSM core facilities in gene expression analysis, genotyping, protein expression, animal experimentation, proteomics, imaging and cell analysis research.

Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington– Biotechnology Program– Ivy Tech Community College’s Biotechnology degree program is designed to provide an educational opportunity to students who want to take career paths in Biotechnology as entry-level technicians.

Ohio State Agricultural Technical Institute, OH–Ohio State ATI has a broad range of programs in agriculture: horticulture, animal sciences, crop sciences, environmental sciences, and engineering technologies. They have the largest number of 2 year agricultural graduates in the nation.

Seattle Central Community College — Biotechnology Training Program– The Biotechnology Training Program prepares students for entry-level employment as biotechnicians and is approved by the college’s industry-based Biotechnology Advisory Committee and the State of Washington. Classes in the program include cell biology, microbiology, genetics, immunology, chemistry, computer science applications, technical writing, applied mathematics, and hands-on training in biotechnology laboratory techniques and media and solution preparation.

University of California, San Diego–UCSD Extension–Offers Professional & Specialized Certificates in Biotechnology–San Diego’s biotechnology, pharmaceutical and marine industries are important growth sectors in the California economy. UCSD Extension offers a broad array of courses and certificate programs to meet the continuing education needs of the life sciences community, support high-level skills development for industry professionals and career transition for those interested in entering the biotechnology field.

University of California, Irvine–The Medical Product Development Certificate Program is designed for engineers, scientists, regulatory professionals, managers, physicians, and marketing and sales professionals involved in the medical product industry (degreed professionals or those with an associate degree). The Clinical Laboratory Science/Medical Technology (CLS/MT) Training Program is a full-time, one-year educational program that leads to a career in diagnostic laboratory medicine. UC Irvine Extension’s program is designed to fill the growing need for professional learning that ensures designing and implementing clinical trials for success. The Medical Product Development program is designed to meet the need for comprehensive professional learning in the successful design, development and delivery of medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and other biomedical products.

University of Hawaii Community Colleges, Kapi’olani Community College– Programs of Study include Medical Assisiting, Medical Laboratory Technician, Occupational Therapy Assistant, Pharmacy Technician, Radiologic Technology, Physical Therapy Assistant, and Respiratory Care Technician. The Nursing program offerings include Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) Licensed Practical Nurse to Registered Nurse Transition Program.

San Diego State University Department of Biology: Certificate in Biotechnology– San Diego State’s biotechnology training program is designed to introduce undergraduate, postbaccalaureate, and postdoctoral students and technicians to state-of-the-art techniques used in molecular biological research laboratories as well as to qualify certificate recipients for employment in various sectors of the biotechnological arena.

University of California, Santa Cruz — Certificate Program in Biotechnology, Applied and Natural Sciences Department– UCSC Extension’s highly regarded Biotechnology Certificate Program was developed to meet the industry’s need for professionals who are knowledgeable about core principles and up-to-date on the latest technologies. Whether you are a scientist or a motivated professional from another discipline (IT, engineering, business, legal, financial, project management, and regulatory), this program is designed to help you to develop the solid scientific foundation and industry savvy needed to advance your career in the biopharmaceutical arena.
Certificate Contact: Applied and Natural Sciences Department, (408) 861-3860, or e-mail program@ucsc-extension.edu.

University of Rhode Island Certificate Programs– Biotechnology Training Initiative Courses and Seminars– Short courses and seminars ranging from half day to four full days are offered in various areas of operations and management of biotechnology, biomanufacturing, and clinical trials as well as basic areas of related research. Courses vary each semester and have included offerings in Tangential Flow Filtration (lecture and laboratory workshops); Environmental Health & Safety Challenges in Biotechnology and Emerging Industries; Genomics and Proteomics; Tools of Biotechnology; Survey of Systems Biology; and various Good Practices Courses such as Good Clinical Practice, Investigator Clinical Practice Training Program course, SOP Writing Skills (Basic and Improve), and Technical Writing.

University of Virginia, Biotechnology Associate Degree Program– PVCC offers a two- year associate degree in biotechnology. This program provides PVCC students with the education and training needed to perform selected activities in a research laboratory. By successfully completing this biotechnology curriculum, students will develop the skills necessary to be competitive for laboratory specialist positions at the University of Virginia and for other lab research positions at biotech companies. This program was developed in response to a demonstrated need for additional laboratory specialists at UVA.

Workforce Alliance Biotechnology Training Grant — The regional workforce investment board for Palm Beach County, Florida has developed a Biotech career ladder with course curriculum for certificate programs and plans to continue the development of a BS to MS program in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology based on coursework in advanced lab techniques. The program is designed to create Biotech career opportunities for participants living in the Treasure Coast.

Online Training and Certificate Programs

Such websites as California Virtual Campus (http://www.cvc.edu/) are also offering training and certifcate programs. The California Virtual Campus site is designed for those who want to further their educational objectives by linking to online courses and other services offered by the Golden State’s colleges and universities. Many colleges and universities in other states are also offering Distance and Online E-Learning Certificate and Training Programs.