July 19, 2002
CONTACT: Jeanne Oswald
(609) 292-4310


The Commission on Higher Education today awarded grants to four state colleges and universities under the Teacher Preparation Grant Program initiated by Governor James E. McGreevey in the FY 2003 budget. The $3 million competitive grant program is designed to increase the number of highly effective teachers prepared to teach math, science, special education, preschool, and literacy in urban schools.

"Ensuring quality education for New Jersey's children is a top priority of our administration," said Governor McGreevey. "These grants are targeted to improving the quality of classroom instruction, which is the single greatest factor toward improving a child's performance."

The recipient institutions are: Kean University (Union), Montclair State University (Upper Montclair), New Jersey City University (Jersey City), and Rowan University (Glassboro). A description of the winning proposals is attached.

"Collectively, these institutions will prepare hundreds of additional effective teachers who are trained specifically to teach in urban classrooms," said Commission Chairman Alfred C. Koeppe. "Our colleges and universities are working to prepare substantially more teachers in targeted areas and working to ensure that New Jersey's teachers have the skills necessary to improve student achievement across the state."

The Teacher Preparation Grant recipients were selected from among eleven proposals submitted by colleges and universities. Commission staff, in consultation with staff from the State Department of Education, developed a competitive process to award the grants. A team of in- and out-of-state reviewers with expertise in teacher preparation evaluated the proposals.

See attached list of recipients.

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Awarded by the Commission on Higher Education July 19, 2002

Kean University - New Pathways to Urban Early Childhood and Special Education Teaching -- $749,970
By establishing new pathways in teacher education, Kean University will substantially increase the number of preschool and special education teachers for placement in urban school districts by creating and expanding upon innovative approaches to the delivery of instruction. Targeting non-traditional populations and taking into consideration the full capacity of current course offerings, Kean will create a weekend college and off-campus centers in urban school districts and at Brookdale Community College. The university will also provide for new online and distance education opportunities, which will include a partnership with Burlington County College. The project will offer tuition assistance for 80 candidates, internships in urban school districts, an urban education summer academy, faculty mentors, and induction year mentoring. By 2005, the project will prepare, and place an additional 45 special education and 155 preschool through grade three teacher candidates.

Montclair State University - The Pipeline Project -- $750,000
In cooperation with the Newark, Paterson, and East Orange public school districts and in partnership with community colleges in Essex and Passaic counties, the grant funding will enable Montclair State University to expand significantly its recruitment, preparation, and support of competent literacy, math, and science teachers for high-need urban school districts. The Pipeline Project will target 40 transfer students annually from two-year institutions for the Urban Teaching Academy (UTA) P-3 program. The UTA P-3 program aims to increase the number of teachers with special preparation in literacy development for urban preschools. In addition, the grant will extend the capacity of the UTA by recruiting teachers in the areas of literacy, math, and science. The project will also enhance the urban school districts' capacity to recruit and retain new teachers through the establishment of Teaching Academies and Future Educators of America clubs.

New Jersey City University - Developing Positive Behavioral and Academic Support within a Secondary Special Education Setting -- $563,579
New Jersey City University will use the Teacher Preparation Grant to support an intensive teacher training program, which employs a research-based positive behavioral and academic support model that has documented success in increasing teacher effectiveness, especially with challenging student populations. The university also aims to increase the number and diversity of teachers achieving the Teacher of the Handicapped License in the state by partnering with community colleges and recruiting an additional 100 students annually by 2007. The grant will support additional efforts by the university and Hudson County Community College to improve the quality of teacher preparation by aligning programs with the state's standards and to establish a professional development school partnership that will help retain qualified special education teachers and improve overall teacher effectiveness.

Rowan University - Valuing Yesterday, Learning Today, and Building Tomorrow -- $749,236
Through significantly enhanced recruitment efforts, Rowan University will increase the pool of highly qualified teachers for urban districts by placing approximately 223 additional student teachers in mathematics, science, special education, preschool/early childhood, and reading by 2005. The university will enhance professional development schoolwork already established in three Abbott districts (Bridgeton, Camden, and Vineland) with the potential to extend to other sites in these and other Abbott districts in southern New Jersey. Increased collaboration will be fostered with pre-kindergarten to 12 schools and community colleges in Cumberland, Gloucester, and Camden counties with the goal of addressing teacher effectiveness at each level of professional growth - pre-service, induction, professional practice, and accomplished practice.

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