New York, Nov 9, 2010–Karin P. Egan, who most recently managed Carnegie Corporation’s Teachers for a New Era program, which will officially conclude on December 31, 2010 after nearly a decade, announced that she will leave the foundation in March 2011 to continue her work in philanthropy and education.

Vartan Gregorian, President of Carnegie Corporation of New York, said “Since joining the Corporation in 1969, Karin has provided invaluable insights, guidance and leadership in our efforts to address some of the most critical questions facing higher education, the healthy development of children, and STEM education. Given Karin’s lifelong dedication to excellence in education and teaching, it is not at all surprising that she was able to bring her talents and experiences to bear in leading the Corporation’s efforts to transform teacher education.”

During her 40-year tenure, Egan has helped to build and manage a variety of grantmaking programs through investments in policy, research and advocacy.  Her work in teacher education reform focused on increasing students’ achievement through improved teacher quality; implementing higher standards for teacher accreditation, licensure and certification; and encouraging collaboration between colleges of arts and sciences and schools of education.

“I have been profoundly privileged in my career to have had the opportunity to contribute to an organization whose mission—that public education is a fundamental tool of  democracy—reflects my own deeply held convictions,” said Egan.  “One of Carnegie Corporation’s greatest strengths has been as an incubator of innovative ideas, and of meaningful research.  But the most important factor accounting for the success of the foundation has always been its staff—my colleagues.  It is their work and dedication that brings vision to life and makes change possible.”

The Corporation’s Teachers for a New Era program, aimed at stimulating construction of excellent teacher education programs at selected colleges and universities as an important effort to improve the quality of teaching in the nation’s schools.  A key design feature of the initiative is a focus on teaching as an academically taught clinical practice profession requiring close cooperation between colleges of education and actual practicing schools.

Some of the country’s leading colleges and universities have begun to embrace the clinical practice approach to teacher training.  These campuses are working directly with public school districts to facilitate new teachers’ transition into taking on the full responsibilities of the profession.  Several of these institutions have initiated two-year programs, comparable to a medical intern’s residency, in which the schools provide their graduates with intensive support and guidance aimed at improving practice, building professional confidence and raising student achievement.

Teachers for a New Era emphasized a respect for evidence, including attention to pupil learning gains accomplished under the tutelage of teachers who are graduates of teacher education programs on the 11 campuses supported by the program.

In the 1990s, Karin participated in the creation of the National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future whose 1996 landmark report, What Matters Most: Teaching for America’s Future, provided a framework and agenda for teacher education reform across the country.  Also among her accomplishments was an effort in the 1990s to create science education alliances in five school districts linking K-12 schools with business and local colleges and universities. 

Effective January and through March 31, 2011, Karin will focus on contributing to the analysis of the Teachers for a New Era initiative for a monograph to be published by the Corporation.  She plans to continue focusing her attention on education policy and philanthropy.