Newsletter  No. 13, March 2012

Seventh Inter-American Meeting of Ministers of Education: Analyzing policies and strategies to strengthen the role of professional educators

On March 1 and 2, 2012, Ministers congregated in Suriname to analyze the current state of the teaching profession in the region, and to propose policies and strategies that strengthen the role of professional educators. For two days, Government representatives held nine plenary sessions seeking to determine what kind of teaching today’s student requires and analyze the role of schools as learning communities. In addition, they reiterated that governments have the responsibility of ensuring access to quality education for all.

 

The "Declaration of Paramaribo" (available here) stressed the importance of teachers in all levels of the educational process. “We reaffirm the key role of the teacher in educational processes and results and recognize that the participation of teachers in efforts to improve the quality of education is important, so as to help ensure that the results are effective and lasting,” the text says.

 

The document also highlights the need for educators “to have access to quality initial preparation and continuing professional development” and acknowledges that “policies to strengthen the teaching profession and opportunities for quality professional development are vital to attract, employ, induct, develop, evaluate, motivate, retain, and recognize teachers so that they become ever better educators.”

 

The Declaration of Paramaribo also emphasizes the importance of expanding access to new technologies in education, and applauds the progress made by the Inter-American Teacher Education Network (ITEN). Adriana Vilela, Specialist in Education and Coordinator of ITEN, made a special presentation on the role of ITEN in horizontal cooperation in the field of education. During this presentation Ms. Vilela highlighted the activities that ITEN conducts to promote information exchange, capacity building and technical assistance in the Americas, including the series of webinars, online courses, case studies, as well as the future implementation of technical assistance missions in topics of teacher education.

 

Source: OAS Press, Gonzalo Espariz (March, 2012).

 

- To access the OAS media gallery, please click here.

First Virtual Educa Caribbean Conference

The First Virtual Educa Caribbean conference in Paramaribo, Suriname from February 29th until March 2nd offered participants the opportunity to show best practices on how ICTs make a crucial impact in innovation, competitiveness, and development of education; with a special focus on the non - Spanish speaking Caribbean.

 

As a joint effort iEARN USA, iEARN Suriname and ITEN hosted a booth at the new Hermitage Mall in Paramaribo on Tuesday February 29th and Wednesday March 1st, 2012. As a result 50 new teachers and future teachers registered in both networks. Numerous stakeholders and leaders in Education visited the booth as well.

 

Following this exhibit on Friday March 2nd, Mónica de la Garza, facilitator of the ITEN community, presented ITEN at the “Virtual Education in Latin America and Europe” panel emphasizing not just its role providing teacher educators and future teachers with an introduction to ICTs in the classroom, but also offering a hub for collaboration among the 34 OAS Member States with the objective of strengthening institutional capacities and developing initiatives and programs in education.

 

Finally iEARN and ITEN offered a workshop together called: “Bringing the World into your Classroom through Collaborative Project-Based Learning” with the objective of proving hands-on experience with global collaborative projects in the classroom and teacher education programs to primary, secondary school teachers and teacher educators from teacher training institutions.

 

- To access the OAS media gallery, please click here.

- To access ITEN's media gallery, please click here.

March Webinars:

Learn about the best strategies for effective classroom management !

 

- Title: "Effective Classroom Management"

-Content: Management programs that empower teachers with skills to build their students’ sense of community, prepare them for successful living, and increase academic achievement.

-Where: Adobe Connect Virtual Platform.

-Who: Ministries of Education, teacher education institutions, teacher organizations, future teachers and those interested in the topic of effective classroom management.

-Language: English.

-Cost: Free.

-When: March 20th, 2012 from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm (Time Expressed in Local Time of Washington, D.C.). To see your local time, click here.

-Presenter: Sonya Fultz, M.Ed., currently teaches in the Education Department at Wilmington College in Wilmington, Ohio. She has ten years teaching experience in public education in a variety of classroom environments. Fultz has led trainings for teachers, school administrators and personnel, pre-service teachers, college faculty, and parents teaching effective classroom management strategies that not only empower teachers to have the greatest impact on student relationship and learning but empower students to be involved in the management process. Fultz has trained the Ministry of Education in Costa Rica and Trinidad in Comprehensive School Conflict Management programs and provided ongoing support to teachers and school personnel for years in classroom management and conflict management.

 

-For further information on the webinar, please click here.

-To register for the webinar, please click here.

 

Join the Discussion on the importance of linking educational processes with social and natural environments !

 

- Title: "The Role of Education in Ecological Restoration and Rehabilitation of Arid and Semi-Arid Ecosystems "

-Content: Analyze the importance of linking educational processes with social and natural environments using as a reference point the experiment on desertified lands recovery, currently being carried out in the Northern Patagonia region.

-Where: Adobe Connect Virtual Platform.

-Who: Ministries of Education, teacher education institutions, teacher organizations, future teachers and those interested in the topic of effective classroom management.

-Language: Spanish.

-Cost: Free.

-When: March 22th, 2012 from 11:30 am to 12:40 pm (Time Expressed in Local Time of Washington, D.C.). To see your local time, click here.

-Presenter: Daniel Perez is a Professor and Chair of the "Intervention in degraded Environments" of the Environmental Science and Health Faculty of the National University of Comahue, Argentina. He is also director of the Laboratory for Ecological Restoration and Rehabilitation of Arid and Semi-Arid Ecosystems of the same faculty, and member of the Ibero-american and Caribbean Ecological Restoration (RIACRE) coordinating board.

 

-For further information on the webinar, please click here. Only available in Spanish.

-To register for the webinar, please click here

The ITEN team at the 2012 Annual Meeting of the Association of Teacher Educators (ATE)

The ITEN Team, along with teachers, undergraduate and graduate students, teacher educators, other school personnel, and specialists in the area of education, gathered to attend the 2012 Annual Meeting of the Association of Teacher Educators in San Antonio, Texas from February 11th-15th. The theme selected by President Jim Alouf was Creating a Global Community of Learners: Guiding the Future of Education.

 

One of the objectives of this meeting was to recognize the role of new technologies in creating innovative practices for teacher education, while taking into account the changes in educational systems worldwide.

 

During the event, the ITEN Team participated leading the following workshops: Finding Global Partners using ITEN and iEARN and Global Teacher Education for the 21st Century Online Course Linking Teacher Educators from Around the World.

 

-For further information on the meeting, please click here.

New Publications

Learn about the most recent publications related to practice and teacher education:

Documents:

 

- Williams, D. (2012). A report on issues in teacher education in the Caribbean Subregion: Understanding the Challenges to Promoting Democratic Ideals in Schools. Washington D.C.: Organization of American States. Retrieved from: http://scm.oas.org/pdfs/2012/CIDI03574E01.pdf

 

- Ravela, P. (2011). What to do with PISA results in Latin America?. Washington D.C.: PREAL (Available in Spanish). Retrieved from: http://www.preal.org/Archivos/Bajar.asp?Carpeta=Preal Publicaciones\PREAL

 

- PREAL (2011). Lessons from the PISA High Performing Educational Systems: A contribution for the Reform Agendas. (Available in Spanish) 13(39) Retrieved from: http://www.preal.org/Archivos/Bajar.asp?Carpeta=Preal Publicaciones\Políticas y Mejores Prácticas\Serie Políticas&Archivo=Polit_39.pdf

 

 

- Shanahan, T.; Fisher, D. & Frey, N. (2012, March). The Challenge of Challenging Text. Educational Leadership. 69 (6). Pp58-62. Retrieved from:

http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/mar12/vol69/num06/The-Challenge-of-Challenging-Text.aspx

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