Welcome to the Deans for Impact blog

Welcome to the new Deans for Impact blog!

The member deans of Deans of Impact and its new staff are committed to four guiding principles that bring focus to all our activities: (1) making data-informed decisions, (2) advocating for common outcomes measures, (3) collecting empirical evidence to test our hypotheses, and (4) being transparent and accountable for improving teacher preparation and student learning.

It’s in the spirit of that fourth principle of transparency that we’re launching this blog.

There is tremendous interest in transforming and improving the ways in which we prepare teacher in this country. But the actual work that takes place inside our nation’s colleges of education — the institutions that prepare more than 90 percent of our teachers — is often hidden from view. Likewise, these teachers and programs serve widely varying communities, which can hamper efforts to collaborate or even know what’s happening in other parts of the country.

A single blog won’t fix that, of course, but our hope here is to foster a dialogue and share more about the work taking place to improve the preparation of teachers. And there’s a lot happening in this space – just in the past few weeks, the Education Policy Center at AIR released a major policy brief on teacher preparation, the Woodrow Wilson Foundation and MIT announced an innovative partnership to create a new model for teacher preparation, and (less helpfully) the House Appropriations Committee released an education spending proposal that would block funding for proposed outcomes-focused teacher-preparation regulations.

So what can you expect to find here? Here’s a few things to start:

  • Updates on our work – We plan to regularly provide updates on the activities we’re pursuing across the three major strands of our work (program, policy, and communications).
  • Conversations with our deans – We have a great group of deans with vast experience in teacher preparation, and we want to make their work more visible.
  • Analysis and discussion of teacher-preparation policy and practice – There is a lot happening in the world of teacher preparation. This blog will be one place to explore the transformation of the field.
  • Humility – We know we don’t have all the answers. Our goal here is to foster a culture of inquiry into the challenges we face in improving and elevating the education profession.

We’re planning updates soon on our recent convening at Southern Methodist University, news about our new members and to announce a new programmatic initiative related to the science of learning. And there’s more to come after that. So please check in often! We are looking forward to the ongoing conversation that starts now.

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