Kentucky State University and Hope Street Group (HSG) are growing their current partnership to further advance opportunities for educators and students.

During a working lunch meeting Feb. 15, a memorandum of agreement (MOA) will be signed to form the Opportunity Access Network.

“As educational leaders, Kentucky State University and Hope Street Group share many values and goals,” Dr. Jo Anne Rainey, chair of the School of Education, said.

Rainey said the goals of the Opportunity Access Network are to diversify the workforce of Kentucky and beyond, notably the teaching workforce; to create practitioner/decision-maker feedback loops that improve systems at the local, regional, state and national levels; and to bridge education and workforce priorities to create opportunity and access for P-16 students and educators throughout the Commonwealth.

“HSG and Kentucky State will partner around many areas of focus, mostly on educator development and recruitment, specifically of teachers of color and training to support new teachers,” Stan Torzewski, director of the Kentucky State Teacher Fellowship Program, said.

The organizations have partnered in the past, as well. HSG previously partnered with Kentucky State on the Improving Educator Quality grant to support the implementation of the Teaching and Learning Career Pathway, Brad Clark, national director of Professional Learning and Curriculum at HSG, said. Kentucky State also previously hosted HSG Fellows training sessions on campus and several faculty have partnered with HSG Fellows on various campaigns, Torzewski said.

According to the MOA, HSG will provide Kentucky State “the programmatic foundation from which it will build, grow and scale its impact in Kentucky public education.”

This will be accomplished through the merging of HSG’s Kentucky State Teacher Fellows Program into Kentucky State’s School of Education.

“This proven program will provide the University a ready, trained, diverse and organized set of teacher/educator leaders from across the Commonwealth that are mobilized to undergird the University’s programmatic enhancement, impact and sustainability,” according to the MOA.

As part of the partnership, the University will provide a director position for the Kentucky State Teacher Fellows Program.

“We expect this partnership will lead to shifts in Kentucky State program and course curricula to reflect more innovative educational and communication practices, which will make courses more current, relevant and engaging,” Rainey said. “Relevant and engaging courses attract capable students, increase retention, foster program completion, promote graduation and prepare individuals for successful employment.”

The meeting is scheduled for Feb. 15 from 11 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. in the Student Center Ballroom, located inside the Carl M. Hill Student Center on Kentucky State’s campus.