Project EXCEL: A Teacher Education Partnership for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities

Project EXCEL: A Teacher Education Partnership for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities

Annette Deborah Miles (University of the District of Columbia, USA) and Ebony Terrell Shockley (University of Maryland – College Park, USA)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 19
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-3454-9.ch004

Abstract

This chapter outlines the initial findings of Project EXCEL, a collaborative partnership that explores how institutions of higher education (IHEs) can better serve surrounding communities and schools seeking to enhance and diversify the teacher education population. The possibilities for teachers, teacher candidates, and partnerships in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and the surrounding metropolitan areas show the next steps for Project EXCEL. The findings serve as an opportunity for other IHEs to consider for partnerships and recruitment.
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Geographic And Historical Context

Project EXCEL (EXCEptional Learners) is a partnership between researchers and teacher educators at two institutions, the University of the District of Columbia and the University of Maryland College Park. These two schools, although in separate states, are only 10 miles apart. Although they may attract different students, based on their location, history, and programs, their surrounding communities can aid in populating both schools’ teacher preparation programs, particularly in terms of a pipeline from and into diverse communities. The surrounding neighborhoods represent one of the most diverse areas in the DMV. The rectangular-shaped District of Columbia borders Maryland on the northeast and southeast and is across the Potomac River from Virginia on the northwest and southwest borders. In this region, there is a multitude of opportunities for IHEs to have an impact on schools, families, the community, organizations, and businesses in the surrounding area. Commuters who live or work in the DMV collaborate with schools in their work communities when their businesses have existing partnerships with the aforementioned IHEs, and universities in the DMV may be positioned to join existing partnerships with IHEs and begin new ones to align with some of the outreach and service-oriented missions of those businesses. Other IHEs in close proximity may want to consider engaging in such collaborative efforts.

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