Elementary Education Program Wins Distinguished Program Award

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The Initial Elementary Education Program at Buffalo State, in collaboration with its Professional Development School Consortium, received the 2003 Distinguished Program Award in Albany last month. This award recognizes the successful collaboration between Buffalo State faculty and the staff at schools where Buffalo State students obtain classroom experience. The award is co-sponsored by the New York State Association of Teacher Educators (NYSATE) and the New York Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (NYACTE).

Buffalo State’s award-winning effort began when the Elementary Education and Reading Department established its Professional Development School Program in 1991. Leslie K. Day is the present coordinator of the program.

The program provides students majoring in elementary education with extensive classroom experience, based on a philosophy that teaching skills are best learned through “mentored immersion in the classroom.” First, students observe cooperating master teachers who work in a school belonging to the Professional Development School Consortium. College faculty and experienced classroom teachers continue to provide both supervised field experience and mentoring to pre-service teachers before they begin student teaching. As a result, teachers in training have the opportunity to make sure that teaching really is their career of choice. Secondly, faculty members and in-service teachers model teaching and mentor pre-service teachers to increase the students’ skills and improve the likelihood that they will succeed in an increasingly demanding career.

Media Contact:
Mary Durlak, College Relations | 7168783517 | durlakma@buffalostate.edu