Angela Calabrese Barton Collection
Angela Calabrese Barton, Associate Professor of Science Education and Coordinator of the Science Education Programs, returned to TC from the University of Texas at Austin with an activist agenda.
Calabrese Barton and colleagues are revising both masters and doctoral programs in Science Education "to link our work here at Teachers College more closely with the schools and community based organizations. We want our students, whether they're studying to be teachers, teacher educators, policy makers or other kinds of practitioners to have the kinds of experiences that they need-both in and outside the university classroom-to prepare them to be leaders in their areas."
Another important initiative is the establishment of what Calabrese Barton calls the Urban Science Education Center-to improve urban science teaching and urban science education. "The issues surrounding science education in urban settings are urgent and varied. Urban schools that serve poor populations are understaffed, have few certified science teachers and offer limited science resources. Further, teachers with the strongest preparation in the sciences who freely elect to teach in the poorest city schools have the highest burn-out rate, leaving their inner-city teaching position before they have completed their third year of teaching," said Calabrese Barton.
According to Calabrese Barton, the Urban Science Education Center-funded partly by a grant from the National Science Foundation will be working closely over the course of the next three years with five low-income schools, three community-based, partnership scientists and science educators. Assistant Professors of Science Education Elaine Howes and Keith Sheppard have joined Calabrese Barton and she is reaching out to other faculty in other programs areas who might want to be affiliated with the Center.
Calabrese Barton said, "The mission of the Center is threefold: to rebuild our science programs at TC so that our graduates become leaders in urban science education; to work closely with schools in order to collaboratively rethink what science education might look like in urban schools; and to use what we learn in the schools and in our teacher education programs to educate those who make policy."