Head of the class: National magazine lists Kansas State University's College of Education among its great teaching schools
Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015
MANHATTAN — Kansas State University's College of Education is getting national attention for doing what it does best: preparing educators, both current and future.
The college is featured in Newsweek magazine's list of 2015's great teaching schools. The magazine cites the college's national award-winning programs; centers that address many of the key topics in education, such as diversity and professional development; and its innovative initiatives to advance teaching and education, including original documentaries that can be used as classroom resources and programs to assist early-career teachers.
The Newsweek article highlights a tradition of national recognition for the college — including 12 major awards since 2012 — and shows why the college produces more teachers annually than any other program in Kansas, according to Debbie Mercer, dean of the college.
"The College of Education at Kansas State University is having an impact on the field of education around the nation and the world," Mercer said. "Whether it is through research, textbooks — one was recently translated into Chinese — or through the college's online offerings of graduate programs, the fact is people from all walks of life are seeking us out to start their careers and advance them."
From bachelor's to doctoral degrees, the college's comprehensive programs prepare future educators for the classroom and help current educators to advance in their careers, garnering national recognition along the way. Some recent honors:
• The 2015 Best Practice Award in Support of Global and International Teacher Education from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education.
• The 2014 Lt. Gen. (Ret.) H.G. "Pete" Taylor Partnership of Excellence Award for Higher Education.
• The 2014 Outstanding Service to Underserved Populations Award from the Association for Continuing Higher Education for Go Teacher, a language training program for Ecuadorian teachers.
• The 2012 Distinguished Elementary Education Program in Teacher Education Award from the Association of Teacher Educators.
In addition, the college's graduate programs are consistently ranked in the top 100 by U.S. News and World Report, and its faculty have earned many national and campus honors — including Mercer, who was recognized recently as one of the top 30 education deans in the nation by Mometrix. More information on the college's many honors is available at http://coe.k-state.edu/news/honors.html.
Since its founding 50 years ago, the college also has been active in addressing many key issues in education, including diversity. The Midwest Equity Assistance Center, housed at the college, has secured more than $30 million to support schools in a four-state region on equity issues. The college's Center for Intercultural and Multilingual Advocacy also has received more than $30 million since its launch and has served as a professional development model for more than 10,000 English as a second language teachers throughout the Midwest since 1998.
The college also leads in educational innovation through such programs as its iPad initiative for faculty and students; providing monetary support for faculty who create digital resources to replace costly textbooks; and Ed Cats, which provides support for teachers early in their careers.
Another innovative offering by the college are documentaries available to all educators — many with lesson plans — that explore important issues in education. One of the college's documentaries, "A Walk in My Shoes: First-Generation College Students," drew praise from first lady Michelle Obama, a first-generation student herself.