Winter 2015 Newsletter
Greetings From the Dean
The best of what we do is often done together. For example, our grant award from the S. D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation resulted from the efforts of multiple faculty and staff in the School of Education, the College of Engineering, the College of Architecture and Environmental Design, the Liberal Studies Department and the Lucia Mar School District. Working together, we will produce problem-based learning activities that include engineering principles. This collaboratively produced curriculum will benefit local teachers and students.
Alumnus Wins Distinguished New Educator Award
Jesse Sanford (Multiple Subject Credential, 2012) recently received the 2014 Distinguished New Educator Award for Santa Barbara County. Sanford is in his second year of teaching at Mary Buren Elementary School in the Guadalupe Union School District.
Alumna Honored by Bureau of Education and Research
In November, the Bureau of Education and Research Recognized Barbara Blanke (M.A., Education, 1985) for her contributions to teachers around the country. During the past seven years, Blanke has planned and facilitated more than 220 seminars for the bureau, reaching more than 9,450 teachers with information on best practices and 21st century skills. It is estimated that her work has indirectly touched the lives of over 236,000 students.
School of Education News
Thank You to Our Generous Donors
We are grateful for the continued support of our generous donors. Alumni, parents and friends provide important financial contributions that enrich students' Learn by Doing education. Thank you.
View a full list of 2013-14 donors
Cal Poly Shares in $8.6 Million Grant to Train STEM Teachers
An $8.6 million Teacher Quality Partnership Grant was awarded to Cal Poly and its partner campus, CSU Monterey Bay, to recruit, train and support new teachers over the next five years. The award is the culmination of the grant competition that President Obama announced in May at the White House Science Fair.
Cal Poly Receives Grant to Develop Project-Based Learning Curriculum
We are happy to announce that Cal Poly's proposal Transforming Teacher Preparation through Project-Based Learning (PBL) Curriculum has been awarded. Cal Poly will receive funding from the S. D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation via the CSU Chancellor's office over the next two years to support PBL efforts in our credential programs here on campus and in schools throughout Lucia Mar Unified School District.
School of Education Welcomes New Faculty Members
Leah Wood, pictured at left, joined the Special Education Program as a new faculty member in fall 2014. The Educational Leadership and Administration Program will welcome Andrea Somoza-Norton in July.
Multiple Subject Teacher Education Preparation Program News
The Multiple Subject Teacher Education Preparation (MSTEP) program allows teacher candidates to spend significant time in field-based learning experiences in elementary classrooms. Cal Poly’s four-term sequence of courses leading to a multiple subject credential was created in response to the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education's recent finding that teacher preparation is more effective when candidates receive substantial opportunities to learn in the field.
Future Agriculture Teachers Learn the Ropes at Statewide Conclave
Cal Poly San Luis Obispo serves as the lead institution for conducting the California Department of Education-sponsored professional development contract for secondary agricultural teachers. The annual Student Teacher Conclave is one of the projects that falls under this umbrella and is designed to recruit and support new teacher candidates. This year, the conclave was held at Modesto Junior College in January and was attended by 49 teacher candidates from UC Davis, CSU Chico, CSU Fresno, Cal Poly Pomona and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.
Local Coalition Releases New Data On Health and Safety of LGBT Youth in San Luis Obispo County Schools.
In January, the Central Coast Coalition for Inclusive Schools (CCC4IS), a network of Cal Poly and community partners supporting safe and affirming school communities, released a fact sheet that highlights the challenges faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth in local schools. Three new California laws — Seth’s Law (2011), The FAIR Education Act (2011) and the School Success and Opportunity Act (2014) — are designed to help all youth feel safer and more included at school with specific protections and attention to LGBT youth.
Interdisciplinary Cal Poly Team Builds Bridges with Elementary Students
Put three multiple subject student teacher candidates and several architectural engineering students together in the same room with some elementary students, and what do they do? Build bridges and sandcastles.
For the past two years, the School of Education Multiple Subject Program and the College of Architecture & Environmental Design (CAED) have brought a bridge design, engineering and construction project into five elementary classrooms in Lucia Mar and San Luis Coastal School districts.
Math Education Faculty Hold Multiple Workshops, Publish Scholarly Work
In July 2014, Elsa Medina and Amélie Schinck-Mikel held the third annual Cal Poly Math Academy for 10th-12th grade students from Santa Maria High School as well as students served by the region 18 Migrant Worker Program. The students spent a week on campus solving non-traditional problems designed to increase their interest in mathematics and build their problem-solving skills and confidence.
Film Screenings, Early Assessment Program and Much More
Our faculty members have been pursuing interests outside their classrooms throughout the year. To read more about the events that took place, see the link below.