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Ed. start Teacher Educators Alliance

April 15, 2011

Come next fall, students in the education department could have a new way to invoke a discussion with the faculty through a new organization known as the Teachers Educator Alliance (TEA).

In its mission statement, TEA says it strives “to create an alliance where members of the Teacher Education Program and Department will come together to discuss relevant issues, provide information, and initiate positive change.”

The initiative began during a trip to Chicago for Assistant Professor of Education Erika Buhring’s TEDP-288 class. After looking at urban education, bilingual education, and the Art Insitute of Chicago, the five members of the class talked about their frustrations with the department over dinner, wishing they had a way for the department and its students to better talk among each other. That inspired them to organize TEA as a class project.

“We want something that’s permanent,” said senior Noelle Burks.

After working on TEA throughout the semester, the group will present their project proposal to the education department this afternoon.

“They haven’t committed to anything but they’re excited about it,” said Buhring.

Once they get the approval of the education department, the group will hold an informational meeting on April 18 at 6:00 p.m. in the Huff Athletic Center.

“We are very optimistic,” said Burks. “It’s not a way to complain about everything. It’s more of a positive thing.”

At the April meeting, the group plans to elect officers for the next year. The five officers will come from each of the specifications of the department: two will be elementary education majors, two will be secondary education majors and one will be from an area like music, art or foreign language.

While Burks and classmates Missy Grady, Ken Sanner, and Emily Isaacs are all seniors and will graduate this year, David Milroy is a junior and will help see the project through next year.

“Everyone says they want something like this but nobody has put it in to action,” said Burks.

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