February 23, 2004
State grants New Teacher Center $889,000 for
San Jose partnership
By Jennifer McNulty
Students in San Joses East Side Union High School District will
benefit from the expertise of the UCSC
New Teacher Center, thanks to a new grant that will increase communication
among teachers and help improve their classroom skills.
The three-year, $888,977 grant from the California Postsecondary Education
Commission (CPEC) will help the district align its middle school, junior
high school, and high school curricula in mathematics and English.
Students in the school district entering high school have been handicapped
by inadequate preparation in math and English.
In collaboration with the district, the New Teacher Center (NTC) will
help teachers improve their skills and communication by offering innovative
summer laboratories for teachers and ongoing mentoring support during
the academic year. The project is expected to serve 136 teachers and
will have an impact on more than 4,000 students.
Curriculum alignment bolsters student success, and teachers from
different schools and different grades need opportunities to interact
and work together, said NTC director Ellen Moir. Our summer
activities will get them started, and we will continue working with
teachers throughout the school year, providing mentors and ongoing professional
The NTC is a national leader in the area of new teacher professional
development. Its mentor-based model of support has a strong track record
of helping teachers improve their classroom effectiveness, which contributes
greatly to job satisfaction and career longevity, and is vital to student
The quality of the teacher is the single most important factor
in determining student success, said Robert Moore, executive director
of the commission. We are extremely pleased to be involved in
the development and implementation of professional development activities
that enable students to have more highly qualified teachers.
The UCSC grant was announced as part of the $14 million Improving Teacher
Quality State Grants Program of the federal No Child Left Behind Act
of 2001. The program focused on districts with a high percentage of
students from low-income families or that have many noncredentialed
teachers. With six feeder middle schools, the East Side Union High School
District encompasses two elementary districts, Alum Rock and Franklin
McKinley, and the high school district.
Since 1984, CPEC has been administering
federal funds to improve teachers professional development. The
commission, which advises the governor and legislature on higher education
policy and fiscal issues, focuses on providing Californians with opportunities
to pursue postsecondary education.
Return to Front Page