Vermont Council of Teacher Educators
Minutes of the April 17, 1998 Meeting
Johnson State College



Spikes of Wheat
The ceaseless turning has ended in flowers,
in a long time stretching its road
all around, into the air 's newness,
and if at last we find under the dust
the mechanism for the next future
let us simply recognize happiness
as soon as it shows itself! As one more
spike of wheat,
in such a way that oblivion contributes
to true clarity, which no doubt does not
Pablo Neruda



Present: Joan Fingon of Green Mountain, Connie Krosney of St. Michael's, Joyce
Cunningham of Castleton, Kathy Jelly of Norwich, Mary O'Brien of VTC, Alice Whiting
of Johnson, Charlie Rathbone of UVM and VISMT, Frank Watson of VISMT, Marge Petit of

The minutes of the 3/13/98 meeting were approved.

Marge Petit, Associate Commissioner of Education, visited and updated the group on department activities. She shared collected research opportunities in Act 60, drawn up with Ray Proulx of the Northeast Regional Lab. [A copy of these is included with the hard copy of these minutes for each institution.] She also shared feedback she's received about the comprehensive assessments just completed. Students will fill out learning opportunity questionnaires in May which attempt to get information about teaching practices. Teachers will fill out questionnaires about background information and implementation of the standards. From these, the department will have data about teaching practices, demographics, and student assessment results. There will be "piles of data." Marge encouraged us to pick up on research opportunities, especially as suggested on the materials mentioned above.

Marge initiated discussion on "aligning pre-service education with the needs of the system," and talked about the possibilities for alignment as a research project, and talked about the need for long term help in addressing research questions.

There are major "action planning" conferences being planned, already scheduled, that we were invited to participate in. These are being planned by UVM and VSC, and include

training higher education folks for action planning beginning in May, and then continuing through the summer, ending with 1 week regional meetings in August. The goal is to have every school have an action plan. Marge will be sending more information to VCTE, and those interested in participating will have an opportunity to do so.

There was also a question raised about the role of the private colleges in all of this planning and in the higher level K-16 alignment planning. We discussed how the "privates" might be represented at these meetings.

Liberal Arts & Science Major: We had a brief discussion, raised by one member's question about whether anyone had heard talk of this being dropped as a requirement for elementary majors. We re-committed ourselves to this discussion for preliminary discussion at the May meeting and for a possible fall conference. While no conclusions were reached (surprise!), there did seem to be agreement that this matter is a long way from resolution, and certainly a long way from being dropped!

In related news, we discussed why we had dropped the spring conference (not enough time and conflicts of schedule with the State Board), and decided to discuss at the May meeting the fall plan. Charlie came with an idea for a conference next year on The Democratic Classroom (enclosed with hard copies of minutes). At the May meeting, we will discuss whether we're interested in one, two, or two-in-one, and create a working group for whatever.

K-16 Alignment: A question was raised about the feasibility/desirability/ definition of thinking of all education as a seamless set of standards, as seemingly implied by the K-16 title being used fairly broadly. When, it was asked, did this happen, and when do we and other higher education faculty participate in this discussion? The meaning of the K- 16 alignment was questioned as well, for pre-service teachers, for entering college students, for graduating college students, for practicing teachers. No conclusions were reached.

AACTE/ATE membership: We want to pursue this membership, and will investigate what it means, and how to go about it. Connie will contact Jill Tarule and Charlie will contact someone from ATE to get more information.

Barry Hertz called in to report on the Standards Board. Dr. Scannell is coming back and doing a full day visit, possibly this summer. The Higher Ed. Committee requested that we send the same (or similar) group to meet with him. We all agreed that Scannell should come to a VCTE meeting in the fall. Barry had knee surgery and is recovering well!

See next page for next meeting plans!!!!!

Next Meeting: May 15, 1998 at Middlebury College 10:00-3:00

Tentative AGENDA:

Set goals for next year's VCTE
Plan fall conference (on either Liberal Arts Major, the Democratic Classroom, or both)
Election of officers
Set meetings for next year
New Business
Old Business






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