Preparing Highly Qualified Teachers for Urban Schools

NCATE is committed to helping solve the staffing problems in urban schools. Over the last two years, with funding from the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations and the MetLife Foundation, we focused on creative approaches to addressing these challenges. The MetLife project concentrated on Urban Teacher Residencies (UTRs) and the Arthur Vining Davis project focused on expanding the role of professional development schools to address the induction needs of new teachers. The two projects converged on Urban Teacher Residencies as a new and sophisticated method for educating teachers, steeped in research and employing the structural changes necessary for high quality preparation.

Urban Teacher Residencies (UTRs) are district-initiated teacher preparation and induction programs built around strong academic preparation interwoven with year-long internships utilizing skilled and mentor teachers. Urban residents are paid but are not teachers of record, and they are placed in schools which offer opportunities to learn in the course of practice. Residents receive induction support for up to three years after their residency. Although there are three such programs operating currently, several more are being developed and it is likely that this trend will continue.

NCATE’s projects have generated several research reports and analyses which will soon be published on our website. Two reports are now available:

Urban Teacher Residency Models and Institutes of Higher Education: Implications for Teacher Preparation (Adobe PDF), was prepared for NCATE by Barnett Berry and Diana Montgomery of the Center for Teaching Quality and Jon Snyder, Dean of the Bank Street College of Education. Questions addressed in this paper include the following:

How should institutions of higher education relate to UTRs?

What lessons do institutions of higher education have to learn from these innovative approaches? What are the policy and funding implications of employing these innovations in IHE programs?

The paper raises many challenging issues as it approaches these questions. This paper was supported by funding from the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations and the MetLife Foundation.

Creating and Sustaining Urban Teacher Residencies: A New Way to Recruit, Prepare and Retain Effective Teachers in High-Needs Districts (Adobe PDF), examines two UTR programs, the Academy for Urban School Leadership in Chicago and the Boston Teacher Residency. The paper describes the characteristics of these programs and considers their impact on teacher quality and retention and student achievement, as well as the policy and finance implications of supporting them.

The paper was prepared by the Aspen Institute and the Center for Teaching Quality in collaboration with NCATE. NCATE is grateful to the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations and the MetLife Foundation. for their funding to help support this work.