The Learning Network–Teachers for a New Era Widens the Circle


Carnegie Corporation of New York and the Annenberg Foundation have joined together to support the Learning Network, a forum for higher education institutions dedicated to reforming teacher education. The network builds on Teachers for a New Era, an initiative launched in 2001 by Carnegie Corporation of New York, with support from the Annenberg and Ford Foundations, and involving eleven colleges and universities across the United States. Through the Learning Network, thirty additional reform-minded institutions have been invited to participate in the Teachers for a New Era effort.

The Learning Network’s goal is to increase the number of institutions actively engaged in transforming teacher pedagogy in accordance with the design principles of the Teachers for a New Era initiative: (1) grounding all elements of the teacher education program on sound evidence, including reliance on measuring the learning gains of pupils; (2) effective engagement of the disciplines of the arts and sciences; and (3) understanding teaching as an academically taught clinical practice profession, including continuing support during the first two full years of professional teaching.

“The importance of teachers in American education has never been a question, but recent research has established beyond doubt that the most important element of student achievement is the quality of the teacher,” states Vartan Gregorian, president of Carnegie Corporation. “At the Corporation, we believe one of the most critical issues facing the country is the preparation of America’s teachers, which is just not good enough. Creating a vision for change and sharing how to improve teacher preparation is something the Corporation is committed to. We are pleased to join forces with the Annenberg Foundation in pursuit of this goal.”

“We were drawn to the Teachers for New Era’s reliance on evidence as its critical reform model,” says Gail Levin, executive director of the Annenberg Foundation. “Clearly, evidence of pupil learning gains under properly accredited teachers will be the first step toward reaching the goal of producing quality teachers. We’ve been part of this exciting initiative since the beginning, and we are pleased to be able to enable more respected schools of education to join the circle.”

On November 14-15, 2005, the first meeting of the Learning Network was convened in Chicago under the auspices of the Academy for Educational Development, and brought together representatives from 41 institutions to participate in a working meeting on K-12 and teacher candidate assessment. Recognized experts in the field discussed strategies being used at other institutions committed to restructuring teacher education programs and led workshops; participants also shared information, explored issues, and generated ideas for cooperation and collaboration.

In addition to expanding the number of higher education institutions actively engaged in transforming teacher education in accordance with the tenets of Teachers for a New Era, the Learning Network will facilitate dissemination of information via websites, electronic publications, workshops and conferences. Newcomers will also be invited to participate in annual meetings focused on raising the bar for schools of education and where participants share strategies that work and don’t work.

Carnegie Corporation’s Daniel Fallon, chair of the Education Division, is the architect of this reform initiative which is also designed to focus national attention on the benefits of employing rigorous academic training to produce teachers who make a difference.

For more information on Teachers For a New Era, or the initiative itself, please go to: Below you will find a list of the thirty institutions invited into the Teachers for a New Era. Click on the links below for a description of each institution’s reform plans.

Alverno College 
Arizona State University 
CUNY Brooklyn College 
East Carolina University 
Georgia State University 
Indiana State University 
Jackson State University 
Johns Hopkins University 
Montclair State University 
New York University 
North Carolina A&T University 
Southeastern Louisiana University 
Teachers College, Columbia University 
Texas A&M University 
University of California, Los Angeles 
University of California, Santa Cruz 
University of Central Florida 
University of Cincinnati 
University of Colorado, Denver 
University of Dayton 
University of Illinois at Chicago 
University of North Carolina, Greensboro 
University of Northern Iowa