For the first time since 1916, someone has founded a new stand-alone graduate school of education. Elizabeth Green at Gotham Schools writes that:
The founders of Teacher U, the nonprofit organization that developed a novel way of preparing teachers for low-income schools, will create their own graduate school of education, following a vote by the Board of Regents last week.
The new Relay School of Education will be the first stand-alone graduate school of education to open in New York since 1916, when Bank Street College of Education was founded, and the first in memory to prepare teachers while they are serving full-time in classrooms. The new institution will open its doors next fall; current Teacher U students will remain enrolled at their partner school of education, the City University of New York’s Hunter College.
I was skeptical. No research has demonstrated that any teacher-training program can improve student achievement. I’m sure the people involved with Teacher U have only the best of intentions, but the world seems to need another teachers college like a hole in the head.
But actually this program looks rather promising. According to Green’s piece “unlike most traditional schools of education, Relay will make training teachers its sole priority and will make proven student learning gains a requirement of receiving a Master’s degree.”
Student learning gains will be a necessary part of the master’s degree. Not bad.
Teacher U appears to cost about $2,000 a year.