Tag: Teach For America

Teachers Erin Whalen and Kari Croft Win $10 Million Prize to Start School for Homeless and Foster Youth

Los Angeles educators Kari Croft and Erin Whalen have won $10 million to start their own school, courtesy of a nationwide competition funded by Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple founder Steve Jobs.
Los Angeles educators Kari Croft and Erin Whalen have won $10 million to start their own school, courtesy of a nationwide competition funded by Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple founder Steve Jobs. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

article by Joy Resmovits via latimes.com

Instead of going to school, school will come to you.

That’s the prize-winning idea behind RISE High, a proposed Los Angeles charter high school designed to serve homeless and foster children whose educations are frequently disrupted.

Los Angeles educators Kari Croft, 29, and Erin Whalen, 26, who came up with the idea, won $10 million in XQ: The Super School Project, a high school redesign competition funded by Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Steve Jobs.

RISE is one of 10 $10-million winning school projects nationwide. Winners receive the prize money over five years.

XQ officials, in announcing the winners on Wednesday, described RISE as a “completely new” model. The idea is to have three to four physical sites sharing space with existing nonprofits as well as an online learning system. A bus will also be turned into a “mobile resource center,” to bring Wi-Fi, a washer/dryer and homework help to the neediest students.

That way, if a student suddenly moves or can’t get to school, he or she will have various options to get tutoring or the day’s lesson.  “The model exists outside the traditional confines of space and time,” Croft said.

RISE, which stands for Revolutionary Individualized Student Experience, is in its preliminary stages. It will be a charter school, but the staff is still figuring out governance structure, facilities and partnerships. As of now, the plan is to open with a small group of students next fall, but eventually to serve between 500 and 550. Continue reading “Teachers Erin Whalen and Kari Croft Win $10 Million Prize to Start School for Homeless and Foster Youth”

Teach For America Marks 25th Anniversary With A Commitment To Recruit More Teachers Of Color

World History teacher Derrick Sanders on Thursday, January 7, 2016. Mr. Sanders, whom graduated from Howard University, is in his first year of being a teacher with the Teach For America program in Dallas. (photo: Brandon Thibodeaux for Education Week)
World History teacher Derrick Sanders on Thursday, January 7, 2016. Mr. Sanders, whom graduated from Howard University, is in his first year of being a teacher with the Teach For America program in Dallas. (photo: Brandon Thibodeaux for Education Week)

article by Nigel Roberts via newsone.com

Some 15,000 guests joined Teach For America at its Washington, D.C. gathering in February to celebrate the organization’s quarter-century anniversary. On this milestone, the group’s army of teachers, alumni, and allies – now numbering 50,000 – commemorated the past, but fixed their eyes on the future.

At the top of TFA’s agenda going forward is recruiting teachers of color to meet the needs of the nation’s exploding Latino student population and African-American pupils who are struggling to close the academic achievement gap.

The ballooning growth of Latinos and the simultaneous decline of the White population have resulted in a significant demographic shift among students. The 2014 – 2015 academic year marked the first time that minority schoolchildren—Latino, African-American, and Asian—outnumbered their White counterparts, Education Week reported.

However, the teaching force has failed to keep pace with this major shift. According to U.S. News, only 17 percent of educators are people of color.

The problem, according to numerous studies, is that minority students perform academically better under the guidance of teachers of their own race or ethnicity.

A study reported by the Washington Post states:

“We find that the performance gap in terms of class dropout and pass rates between white and minority students falls by roughly half when taught by a minority instructor. In models that allow for a full set of ethnic and racial interactions between students and instructors, we find African-American students perform particularly better when taught by African-American instructors.”

Why do minority students tend to perform better with teachers who look like them? The study reported in U.S. News says teachers of color are often better motivated to teach in racially segregated, poor schools. What’s more, they typically have higher academic expectations of their pupils and better understand their culture.

Continue reading “Teach For America Marks 25th Anniversary With A Commitment To Recruit More Teachers Of Color”