October 2, 2009 - United States Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has announced that California State University, Bakersfield will receive a $12,595,813 grant to improve teacher quality and reform teacher education at high-need schools in central California. The federal grant is one of only 28 in the nation, and the largest award in California, to be given as part of the Teacher Quality Partnership aimed at improving instruction in struggling schools.
The grant will be dispersed over five years to fund creation of the Central California Partnership for Teacher Quality Programs (CCP-TQP), with $2.4 million in first-year funding to be shared among partnering agencies. CSUB will serve as the lead agency for the program in partnership with CSU Monterey Bay, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, Tulare County Office of Education, and the Kern County Superintendent of Schools.
"Part of our educational mission is to raise the education level in our community and throughout central California, and we can only be successful through strong partnerships with other educators. This grant provides a tremendous boost to that effort," said President Horace Mitchell. "The grant will help in preparing effective teachers and improving student achievement, which in turn strengthens the economic future and viability of the region."
CCP-TQP is an innovative collaboration involving partnerships between CSUB, CSU Monterey Bay, and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo who all collaborated in the writing of the grant as well as the Kern County Superintendent of Schools and the Tulare County Office of Education. Together they will address the diverse needs of schools, teachers and students at 16 high-need schools in primarily rural areas. With a focus on science, math and special education, the partnership looks to reform teacher education that includes unique approaches for the preparation and induction of new teachers.
The new program will provide a two-year introductory experience and mentoring for new teachers in partner schools. CCP-TQP will also provide support for new teachers and educational leaders through the continuous improvement of important reforms including:
- universal design for learning;
- positive behavior intervention;
- use of scientifically valid instructional practices;
- differentiated instruction;
- effective strategies for reading instruction;
- professional learning communities; and
- facilitation skill development.
"Research shows that teacher quality is the most important factor in improving student achievement," said Curt Guaglianone, CSUB special assistant to the provost and the CSUB grant administrator. "From a university perspective, we need to improve the way we prepare teachers by focusing on successful methods of teaching in local schools. Faculty members from CSUB, CSU Monterey Bay and Cal Poly SLO will be in K-12 classrooms working to ensure that the university teacher preparation programs are realistic and effective. Part of our goal is to strengthen teachers' skills before they even reach the classroom."
To obtain the competitive grant, university officials submitted an extensive proposal that detailed project objectives and collaborative relationships with partners. Letters of support for the grant were submitted by Congressman Kevin McCarthy; Congresswoman Lois Capps; Kern County Superintendent of Schools Christine Lizardi Frazier; Tulare County Office of Education Superintendent Jim Vidak; California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo President Warren Baker; California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo Dean, College of Science and Mathematics Philip Bailey; CSU Monterey Bay Dean, College of Professional Studies Brian Simmons; as well as business partners Apple, California Business for Education Excellence, Parsons Corporation, and Raytheon.
In addition, superintendents from 26 high-need school districts in Kern, Tulare and Monterey counties submitted letters advocating support of the grant.
Guaglianone estimates the partners will begin their work to create the CCP-TQP by January 2010.
For more information:Curt Guaglianone
Media ContactColleen Dillaway, Director of Public Affairs & Communications