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News from Baylor School of Education

April 15, 2021
by Baylor Instant Impact
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SOE Celebrating Alumni Week and Giving Day [04/15/2021]

Alumni Week Speakers

Baylor SOE Alumni Week video “The Heart of a Baylor Educator” features (l-r) Dr. Shanna Hagan-Burke, Dr. Brooke Blevins, Dr. Tonya Davis, Dr. Jon Eckert

Baylor School of Education is celebrating Alumni Week and Giving Day this week. The SOE’s “Lunch & Learn” video for Alumni Week is available on demand now at this link:

“The Heart of a Baylor Educator” On Demand Video

The video features messages from:

  • Dr. Shanna Hagan-Burke, Dean
  • Dr. Brooke Blevins, chair of Curriculum & Instruction
  • Dr. Tonya Davis, professor of Educational Psychology
  • Dr. Jon Eckert, professor of Educational Leadership

During Giving Day on April 14, the School of Education reached its goal of 100 donors, unlocking a challenge gift from Bobby Nail, 1976 graduate of Baylor School of Education. The challenge gift provides $20,000 in student scholarship funds, in addition to the $5,825 raised from 111 gifts on Giving Day.

Thank you, Baylor Family, for your generosity.

You can always access SOE giving links here:
Make a Gift to Baylor SOE

April 7, 2021
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Baylor PhD Student Earns Honors from CEC and OAR [04/06/2021]

PhD student Marie Kirkpatrick

Baylor School of Education PhD student Marie Kirkpatrick

Baylor School of Education doctoral student Marie Kirkpatrick has received recognition from the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) and the Organization for Autism Research (OAR) for her research related to autism.

CEC chose Kirkpatrick as an Outstanding Scholar to join the Division for Research Doctoral Student Scholars Cohort 13. Students are selected through an internationally competitive review process based on proposals and nominations. Kirkpatrick was nominated by Dr. Jessica Akers, her mentor and an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Psychology, specializing in Applied Behavior Analysis.

The CEC program provides professional development and networking for advanced doctoral students who are conducting research in special education. Kirkpatrick said the program has provided guidance in publishing articles, collaborating within Baylor and across universities, obtaining grant funding, and mentoring and advising students.

The Organization for Autism Research (OAR) awarded Kirkpatrick a grant of $1,730 for her doctoral dissertation research. A record number of proposals was reviewed by the OAR Scientific Council, a panel of experts, and awarded based on alignment with OAR’s research priorities, methodological soundness, and relevance for those affected by autism. Continue Reading →

March 31, 2021
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Over $800,000 Awarded for SOE Faculty to Help Parents and Teachers with Behavioral Intervention Training [03/31/2021]

As National Autism Awareness Month begins in April, two Baylor University School of Education faculty members have received grant awards from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) to fund research and training in behavioral intervention practices that improve outcomes for children with autism.

Tonya Davis, Ph.D., BS ’02, MS ’04, professor of educational psychology and director of the special education program in the Baylor School of Education, was awarded a $474,843 grant to provide intervention training to teachers who serve students with autism in kindergarten through 12th grade. Stephanie Gerow, Ph.D., assistant professor of special education, was awarded a $369,699 grant to provide intervention training to parents.

READ MORE ON THE BAYLOR SITE . . .

(This work was supported in whole or in part by a grant from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB). The opinions and conclusions expressed in this document are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the opinions or policy of the THECB.)

March 4, 2021
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Baylor SOE Researcher Dr. Stephanie Gerow Earns $493,000 Grant [03/04/2021]

Stephanie Gerow

Dr. Stephanie Gerow – Assistant Professor

Stephanie Gerow, Ph.D., assistant professor of educational psychology in the Baylor University School of Education, has earned a coveted grant from the U.S. Department of Education to fund research that will provide early childhood professionals with behavioral intervention training for children with developmental disabilities.

The award—an Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Early Career Development and Mentoring Award from the U.S. Department of Education — provides $493,412 in research funding and is the first of its kind awarded to a Baylor faculty member.

Gerow’s grant is designed to help early-childhood professionals at community agencies and families learn to implement evidence-based interventions for problem behavior in young children with developmental disabilities.

READ MORE…

February 2, 2021
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Baylor School of Education’s Center Updates Name [02/02/2021]

BCSL 2020 WInter Leadership Seminar

The Winter Leadership Seminar, held Jan. 30, 2020, was the last in-person education event for the newly renamed Baylor Center for School Leadership. Switching to virtual events in March, the Center provided webinars for more than 800 school leaders in 2020. Virtual institutes in 2021 are already serving more than 100 leaders per month.

Baylor School of Education’s Center for Christian Education has changed its name to the Baylor Center for School Leadership (BCSL) to better reflect its mission to serve school leaders.

Matt Thomas

Dr. Matt Thomas, speaking at the 2019 Academy for Teaching and Learning

Dr. Matt Thomas, Executive Director of the Center for School Leadership, said the name change does not reflect any change in the Center’s mission. “Be assured our mission and aim will not change, nor will the centrality of the Christian faith be diminished in any way,” he said. “In fact, this name change will enhance our ability to serve Christian schools and Christian leaders.”

The Center serves Christian independent schools and their leaders and also offers programming for Christians serving in any type of school in the U.S. and abroad. Its programs include conferences, symposia, and field-based consultative services aimed at all levels of school leadership. Recent offerings have provided professional and leadership development opportunities for teachers (organized by grade and subject level), heads of independent schools, financial leaders and board members for independent schools, and those in public education settings. Continue Reading →

January 25, 2021
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Baylor SOE Doctoral Student Wins National Award [01/25/2021]

Lori Leibowitz, Baylor EdD studentBaylor doctoral student Lori Leibowitz took on a new job just two years ago, and in that time she has totally redesigned the gifted education program in her Connecticut school district. Recently she received national recognition for her efforts, which have resulted in inclusion of more students in gifted education programs, beyond those who do well on traditional academic measures.

A student in Baylor School of Education’s EdD Online in Learning and Organizational Change (EDD-LOC) and District Coordinator for the Gifted and Talented Program in Norwalk (Connecticut) Public Schools, Leibowitz received the 2020 Gifted Coordinator of the Year Award from the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC). Leibowitz holds an MA in education from Sacred heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut, and a BA in history from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. To her current job she brought more than 20 years of classroom and administrative experience in Connecticut elementary and middle-grades schools, including a seven-year stint teaching advanced learning programs. Continue Reading →

December 2, 2020
by Baylor Instant Impact
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School Psychology Doc Student Named Tops in Texas [12/02/2020]

Brandon Parker

Brandon Parker, doctoral student in School Psychology (Photo by Baylor Photography)

Brandon Parker, a third-year PhD student in School Psychology, was awarded the 2020 Texas Association of School Psychology (TASP) Outstanding Graduate Doctoral Student Award.

Parker was nominated by his current practicum supervisor, Lindsay Shockley, BA ’06 (psychology), EdS ’09 (School Psychology), a school psychologist for Lorena ISD, south of Waco. At Lorena ISD, Parker provides individual counseling services to students placed in special education.

“I help students work on increasing positive thoughts, feelings, and behaviors,” Parker said. “I help them with social skills and study skills, and I help them with emotional regulation and anger management.” Continue Reading →

November 23, 2020
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Fall 2020 Issue of Impact Newsletter is Online [11/23/2020]

The fall 2020 issue of Baylor Impact newsletter is now online. This issue is online only, and alumni should have received an email with the newsletter today. If you did not receive an email with the newsletter, please let us know by emailing BaylorImpact@baylor.edu. To make sure you don’t miss any future communications, you can also update your information online at this link: Update Your Information

The Fall Impact issue features the work of faculty, students, and alumni who are making a difference through education. Read about exciting new academic programs, how our faculty are serving educators, and how student teachers are succeeding in the midst of a global pandemic.

Great news includes:

CCE Answers the Call — How the Center for Christian Education made the most of cancelled in-person workshops to reach thousands more in virtual settings.

Teacher Education in Challenging Times — SOE faculty and students are adjusting and succeeding on the Baylor campus and in local schools.

School Psychology Degree in Dallas — The SOE has extended its reach to the Metroplex, offering the EdS degree at the campus of Baylor’s Nursing School.

There’s more inspiration in the story of globe-trotting teacher and PhD student Kenley Bailey Ritter, BSEd ’06, and the heart-warming profile of Baylor supporters Jim and Kaye Patterson. news about the new MA in School Leadership and more.

October 12, 2020
by Baylor Instant Impact
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That Summer When . . . How teachers can “warm up a cold, virtual space” [10/12/2020]

Faculty Guest Blog by Tracey Jones

Tracey Jones, who teaches Spanish Education and ESL (English as a Second Language) in the School of Education, shares creative and successful teaching strategies she has employed in the current online environment. Jones taught ESL to SOE students this summer during Baylor’s “Summer of Discovery” and is a Baylor Lecturer in Modern Languages & Cultures.

Reprinted with permission from the Fall 2020 Newsletter of Texas TESOL
(Texas Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages)


It seems likely that one could begin a narrative with “That summer when…” and launch into a description of high temps, high anxiety and trips canceled, with images of teachers pivoting, prepping and re-prepping, and anyone who lived through it will nod knowingly and say: “That had to be Summer 2020.”

Many of us made an abrupt shift, beginning last March, to fully virtual teaching. I have been an online student in various programs since 2011, and this seemed to work to my advantage a bit. When colleagues were discovering the wonder of Zoom, I had been fortunate enough to be a student on Zoom since the application came out in 2013. I have experienced varying levels of teaching effectiveness from an online student perspective, and that background has afforded me a unique view as I put on my Online Teacher Hat. Continue Reading →

October 5, 2020
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Dr. Kelly Johnston Receives Laska Award for Doctoral Research [10/05/2020]

Dr. Kelly JohnstonDr. Kelly Johnston, Assistant Professor in the Baylor School of Education, won the 2020 John Laska Distinguished Dissertation Award in Teaching from the American Association for Teaching and Curriculum (AATC) for her recent dissertation research. Johnston joined the Baylor SOE faculty in 2018 and currently teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction.

Johnston’s dissertation, (Re)Imagining Possibilities for Youth in Schools: A Rhizomatic Exploration of Youths’ Affective Engagement with Literacy, focuses on youths’ different forms of literacy engagement in the classroom and how these understandings can be used to rethink literacy teaching and learning in and out of schools. Johnston’s dissertation was part of her Ed.D. in Curriculum and Teaching, which she earned in 2018 at Columbia University’s Teachers College. She previously earned her M.Ed. in Reading Education from Texas State University in 2011 and her B.S. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Baylor in 2004. Continue Reading →