Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

In Search of the Most Effective Education

Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

In Search of the Most Effective Education

Article excerpt

How do we ensure that students, particularly students of color, get the best education possible? From standardized testing to teacher education, there are ongoing debates about who and what most affects a student's achievement. And how do we best measure students' progress over the years? Do we compare them to their peers or just to themselves?

Trumping "every other variable, including that dreaded triumvirate of race, class and poverty," writes Kendra Hamilton in her article "Banking on the Future," the quality of the teacher has the single greatest impact on student achievement. Carnegie Corporation has found this to be true, which is why they are targeting pre-service teacher education in "Teachers for a New Era." They have selected New York's Bank Street College of Education, along with three other universities, to participate in this three-year initiative.

Bank Street College's School for Children has long been a national leader in developing early childhood programs, "best practices" models, research and technology. The college is able to use the school to apply all of the "best practices" to see what works in a real-live classroom. However, Bank Street and Carnegie Corporation hope to take "what works" beyond the college's School for Children and replicate this model for other institutions. Both the college and its grantor believe that the results of the three-year initiative could produce truly outstanding teachers - on a consistent basis.

We go from secondary to postsecondary education in Kristina Lane's and Ronald Roach's articles on the trend of some community colleges to offer baccalaureate degrees.

Kristina's article entitled "Community Colleges' New Foray," looks at this trend's popularity over the last decade. She writes that the sheer number of community colleges that have sought and won baccalaureate certification in recent years suggests that the phenomenon is gaining momentum. Some proponents of the movement say it's an issue of supply and demand. For example, some community colleges are located in rural communities. Residents would have to commute hundreds of miles to attend the nearest four-year institution. Therefore, community colleges must adapt their offerings to fill the void. …

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