In early October, Dean of the School of Education at the University of St. Thomas Kathlene Holmes Campbell participated in “Reimagining Teacher Preparation Together,” a two-day convening held by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle. Campbell, along with six other Minnesotans including a member of the House of Representatives, joined attendees from approximately 15 states and regions at the event.

The goal of the convening was to encourage collaboration with a diverse set of participants in order to gain a better understanding on how to improve teacher preparation sustainably.

“The School of Education at St. Thomas believes in the power of collaboration and the importance of convening stakeholders across education,” Campbell said. “Being invited to this convening let us convey our mission to a larger consortium in teacher preparation, while simultaneously help us refine our strategies on how we prepare future educators and leaders to teach, lead and positively impact students all for the common good.”

Campbell said it was “invigorating” to discuss how teacher preparation programs could work collaboratively with schools and school systems in order to be responsive to the needs of the community.

At the convening, participants engaged in “cross-regional, cross-role learning teams” through a range of programming and breakout sessions.

“Over the two-day convening, I discussed a variety of initiatives that could positively impact students in our local community,” Campbell said. “In addition, it was helpful to hear how other teacher preparation programs and school systems were working together with state agencies and nonprofits to address the opportunity gaps in their local context. The resources shared at the convening provided a solid foundation for teacher preparation programs to build upon. I am excited to share these resources with the School of Education faculty and staff to deepen our commitment to utilizing a community-based approach in teacher preparation.”

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