UNF awarded $1.6 million for teacher program

Federal grant will support partnership with public schools

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The College of Education and Human Services at the University of North Florida was awarded a $1.6 million Teacher Quality Partnership grant from the U.S. Department of Education to support teacher preparation models that prepare prospective and new teachers to serve students in high-need schools.

The grant will be disbursed over five years to support a partnership of three colleges at UNF, Duval County Public Schools and high-need elementary and secondary schools.

“This grant is an excellent example of how we can collaboratively develop and enhance the teacher pipeline through strong partnerships,” said Diane Yendol-Hoppey, dean of the College of Education and Human Services, in a news release.

The project, Transforming Teacher Preparation for Duval County through Teacher Residencies, is designed to enhance recruitment, preparation and retention of elementary and secondary educators.

The program has three goals: Increase the number of teachers certified to teach high-need subjects and grades, increase retention of effective teachers in high-need schools and subjects and increase the motivation and performance of high-need DCPS students.

“While Duval County students are becoming increasingly diverse, requiring teachers to improve how they use data to differentiate instruction, the number of highly qualified teachers in the district lags considerably behind the Florida average. This project will directly address this deficiency,” said Paul Parkison, chair of the Department of Teaching, Learning and Curriculum.