FRANKFORT, KY — Kentucky State University professor Jo Anne Rainey was on a mission. The Interim Chair and Associate Professor was armed with new School of Education brochures and a determined spirit on Wednesday as she, Assistant to the President for Academic and School District Outreach Vincent Mattox, Vice President of Business Affairs Greg Rush, and Chief Innovation Officer Ron Chi met with Sen. Julian M. Carroll to discuss School of Education initiatives with P-12 partner schools and districts during Kentucky Association of Colleges for Teacher Education’s Day on the Hill at the Capitol Building.
“When Sen. Carroll heard about our initiatives in the School of Education, he was excited about the way we partner with schools,” Rainey said. “He asked us, ‘Do you ever do anything with the schools?’ I said, ‘Let me tell you what we do with the schools. We have our teacher candidates in schools from their very first education course. We assign courses to schools, which is an innovative strategy that I’ve never seen anywhere else.’”
Rainey also explained that courses are taught directly in the schools – curriculum and instruction in Second Street School, development in Good Shepherd so they can see K through 12. The candidates gather, talk about the course content with their professors and then go directly into classrooms to practice what they’ve learned.
“Sen. Carroll said he’d never heard of anything like that before,” she said. “That opened the door for Vince and Ron to tell him about our initiatives in cultural competence and excellence in teaching. The senator really was glowing when we left.”
Rainey was among students, professors and administrators from 14 Kentucky colleges and universities participating in KACTE Day on the Hill. KSU juniors Argelia Fabian, Jade Brooks, Rachel Clowers, and Danielle Hill and senior Jeff Eddy also attended the event. Faculty professors William Welch and Gavin Washington participated in the Day on the Hill.
KACTE president-elect Dr. Carol Ryan of Northern Kentucky University was thrilled to see exhibits from other schools including Kentucky State University, Eastern Kentucky University, Northern Kentucky University, Union College, Morehead State University, University of Pikeville, University of Kentucky and Thomas Moore University. Ryan says she is considering making Day on the Hill an annual event.
“We want to make our legislators more aware that university-based educator preparation programs are the only way to truly meet the needs of the education community,” she said. “We want them to know that we produce quality graduates.”