The Celebration of Teachers program was first established in Fall 1999. Each year teacher candidates from all departments who sponsor teacher licensure programs nominate former teachers who inspired them to become teachers. The recipients are always honored to realize their nominations and the event on campus that they have had such a profound impact on their former students, many of whom they have not seen in years. The event truly celebrates the strong commitment to teaching that our honorees and students share.
Westfield State University Professional Development Schools
The Westfield Professional Development Schools (WPDS) network started in Fall 2001 to establish a new and more collaborative relationship with five elementary schools in the Westfield Public School District. Starting in Fall 2015, the new network (WSUPDS) expanded to five school districts in Western Massachusetts (Agawam, Holyoke, Northampton, Springfield, and Westfield). Faculty liaisons from the Education Department are assigned to each district. A new feature of the WSUPDS is the implementation of the practicum seminars conducted by the faculty liaisons. The Teacher-in-Residence (TIR) serves as one of the faculty liaisons. Another new initiative is the full-year experience for education students so they may complete their final pre-practicum course and student teaching in the same classroom with the same supervising practitioner. (See below for additional information.) This program isn’t limited to WSUPDS schools, but it is administered by the director of the WSUPDS. The WSUPDS and its district partners will continue to look for ways to further develop their partnerships in the upcoming years as they work to develop even more effective programming to needs of both P-12 students and teacher candidates.
This program is designed for students who major in Elementary Education and who also have an interest in obtaining a second initial license in Moderate Special Needs and a Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree. After four years, including summer sessions between junior and senior years, the initial phase of this program leads an undergraduate degree and initial licensure in Elementary Education, grades 1-6, providing all degree and licensure requirements are complete, including successful completion of student teaching. A fifth year of study at the graduate level leads to initial licensure in Moderate Special Needs, grades PreK-8, and a M.Ed. degree providing all degree and licensure requirements are complete, including successful completion of student teaching. Please contact Dr. Sandra Berkowitz, Chair, Education Department at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The Teacher-in-Residence (TIR)
The Teacher-in-Residence (TIR) is designed for public school classrooms teachers who wish to serve as a member of the Westfield State University Education Department faculty. In this mentored position the TIR teaches undergraduate courses and is a member and faculty liaison in the Westfield State University Professional Development Schools (WSUPDS). In this role the TIR works closely with both district personnel and WSU faculty in program development. The TIR also supervises teacher candidates completing the full-year experience in the TIR’s assigned district in the WSUPDS. (See above.) The TIR works closely with department faculty to support and to improve teacher preparation practices at the University.
The purpose of this program, first established in Fall 2000, is to encourage veteran teachers to share their expertise and experience with WSU students enrolled in teacher education programming at WSU. The goal is three-fold: (1) WSU wants to provide valuable professional development experience for the TIR; (2) We know our students will gain valuable insights into the everyday world of classroom teaching today; and (3) The education faculty and other teacher education faculty will benefit from our interactions with a knowledgeable and valuable colleague.
Note: If you are a classroom teacher and you are interested in learning more about the Teacher-in-Residence program, contact Dr. Sandra Berkowitz, Chair of the Education Department, by calling (413) 572-5315 or via email at: email@example.com.