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News from Baylor School of Education

May 14, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Outstanding Seniors Honored by Baylor School of Education [05/14/2019]

SOE senior honorees with Interim Dean Terrill Saxon. L-R (back): Connor Galloway, Lindsey Carpenter, Saxon, Abby Olsen; (front): Meredith Steward, Megan Talley, Ashley Nock. Not pictured: Grace Wiley

Baylor School of Education (SOE) recognized seven seniors as outstanding students at the 34th Annual Senior Recognition Banquet April 25. Seniors were recognized for their excellence in academic and fieldwork in education programs and their readiness to impact the world.

EDICUT Preservice Educator of the Year Award

Meredith Steward

Meredith Steward

Meredith Steward, an all-level special education major from Boerne, Texas, was named the 2019 EDICUT Pre-Service Educator of the Year. This award, also known as the “Dean’s Award,” honors a student who most exemplifies the bright future for the teaching profession by the Education Deans of Independent Colleges and Universities in Texas (EDICUT).

Steward said, “I believe strongly in helping those in need. I pursue teaching in the special education field, because I am passionate about seeing every single student succeed in and outside the classroom.” Continue Reading →

May 9, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Baylor SOE Honors Memorable Teachers [05/09/2019]

Strzalka and Willemssen

Baylor School of Education senior Alyssa Strzalka nominated her high school band teacher, Steve Willemssen of Wheaton, Illinois.

Two teachers were honored at the annual Baylor University School of Education Senior Recognition Banquet on April 25. Following tradition, Baylor School of Education seniors had the opportunity to nominate teachers who had been influential in their lives. Students submitted a nomination essay about their teacher, and the awarded educators were chosen by a Baylor faculty committee.

This year, Steve Willemssen of Aurora, Illinois, and Andy McCoy of Georgetown, Texas, were honored with the Baylor School of Education’s “Most Memorable Teacher” award. Continue Reading →

May 2, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Baylor Professors Take Over Authorship of Popular McGraw-Hill Series [05/02/2019]

Talbert and Magill

Dr. Tony Talbert (left) and Dr. Kevin Magill are the new editors of “Taking Sides.”

For 35 years, the popular McGraw-Hill historical text series Taking Sides: Clashing Views in U.S. History has been edited and authored by former history professors. Now the baton has been passed to Baylor School of Education faculty Dr. Tony L. Talbert and Dr. Kevin R. Magill. The duo’s background in social studies and pedagogy brands their writing of the 18th edition with a unique edge of cultural and social consideration while consciously reaching for the reader’s attention. Since 1985, the most successful companion classroom resource has analyzed historical nuances between facts to provide a well-rounded perspective for students and educators.

Flip through a traditional American history textbook and you will find the expected ­­­­– a linear progression of facts, drawn from primary resources, about what happened before and after the Civil War. Every event from the American Revolution to the Civil Rights movement is covered and drilled down to the basics. But Magill and Talbert do not find the past so simply compartmentalized. Continue Reading →

April 24, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Waco Teacher Honored with Centennial Mentor Award [04/24/2019]

Henson at Parkdale

Waco ISD teacher Cathy Henson (left), a kindergarten teacher at Parkdale, is receiving the SOE Centennial Outstanding Mentor Award after being nominated by her student-teaching intern Alexandria Knight (right) and previous mentees.

Waco kindergarten teacher Cathy Henson will receive the Centennial Outstanding Mentor Award – a first for the Baylor School of Education – during the SOE’s Senior Banquet on Thursday, April 25, 2019, at the Baylor Club.

The Centennial SOE Outstanding Mentor honor is being awarded in conjunction with the SOE’s year-long Centennial anniversary celebration. Henson was chosen from among a field of educators nominated by current and former SOE students, faculty, staff and partners. Alexandria Knight, Henson’s student teaching intern this year, nominated her mentor along with three of Henson’s former interns: Landreigh Knapp, BSEd ’18; Carmen Gutierrez Rodarte, BSEd ’16;  and Lauren Ancell, BSEd ’17.

“I was overjoyed that we could all come together and recognize Mrs. Henson for the impact she has made in our lives and many other previous interns’ lives,” Knight said. “Mrs. Henson has a love for Baylor and Baylor School of Education, which makes interning with her even that much more special. She has so much compassion and love for her students, co-workers and interns. I am truly blessed to know her, learn from her, and have taught alongside her this school year.” Continue Reading →

April 8, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Dr. Robert Cloud Receives Lifetime Leadership Award [04/08/2019]

Robert Cloud, HEI Award

Dr. Robert Cloud (left) received the HEI Lifetime Leadership Award, presented by HEI president Dr. Mary Darden and by Charlie Boyd, member of the HEI Advisory Board.

Dr. Robert Cloud, professor and chair of the Department of Educational Leadership in the Baylor School of Education, received the Lifetime Leadership Award from Higher Education Innovation (HEI) at its conference in March.

In presenting the award, HEI president Dr. Mary Darden, MSEd ’91, EdD ’06, a former student of Cloud’s, said that he always set an example of integrity, honor and self-sacrifice.

“Dr. Cloud always went above and beyond, especially for students,” Darden said. “He expected the best from his students and almost always got it. He was a mentor and encourager, challenger, scholar and advocate.” Continue Reading →

April 2, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Math Camp Expands through Cooper Foundation Grant [04/02/2019]

MELA

School of Education student Bethany Levallais served as a teaching associate for MELA in summer 2018.

Baylor’s Mathematics for Early Learners Academy (MELA) program, hosted at the Mayborn Museum each summer, received $74,000 from the Cooper Foundation for the summer of 2019, allowing the program for children in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten to expand to more schools. The Baylor School of Education previously funded the program, but now MELA is expanding with the goal to serve a hundred students.

The four-week experience, led by Dr. Sandi Cooper, professor of mathematics education, aims to build on children’s developing understanding of early number concepts with children from five Waco ISD elementary schools: South Waco, Crestview, Brook Avenue, JH Hines, and Alta Vista. The grant will now allow MELA to expand to LaVega ISD. Students with low district assessment scores are eligible to attend, and Cooper’s research has shown that math abilities of the participants progressed to get them ready for the next grade level.

Cooper said her goal is to help the students who need it the most get a strong start in mathematics education. She said the Cooper Foundation’s generous grant allows the program to do just that as it extends its reach to more children. As the program expands to serve La Vega ISD, two new teachers from the district will join the MELA team. Continue Reading →

March 7, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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SOE Faculty Member Serves as President of School Science and Mathematics Association [03/07/2019]

Suzanne Nesmith, Ph.D., is passionate about the integration of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) across the disciplines, and now she has taken that commitment to new heights. A science educator, associate professor and associate dean in the Baylor University School of Education, Nesmith is serving as president of the School Science and Mathematics Association (SSMA), a multi-disciplinary organization founded in 1901. Her two-year term as president runs until the fall of 2020.

SSMA brings together researchers and teachers to promote research, scholarship and practice to improve school science and mathematics and to advance the integration of school science and mathematics.

“The organization was multi-disciplinary very early in its history and is the oldest STEM organization in its addressing of more than one content area,” Nesmith said. “And that’s why it’s one of my favorite organizations and I get so much out of it, because we have individuals with expertise in different fields coming together and recognizing the value of looking at things from these different perspectives.”

READ MORE . . .

March 6, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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SOE Grad Wins Dissertation Award [03/06/2019]

Baylor School of Education graduate Dr. Neil Shanks, who will join the Baylor faculty in the fall, received the 2018 Larry Metcalf Exemplary Dissertation Award from the National Council for the Social Studies. The award recognizes outstanding research completed in pursuit of a doctoral degree.

Shanks graduated from Baylor University in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in Education and in 2014 with a Master of Science in Education. He then completed his doctorate in social studies education at the University of Texas.

Previously, Shanks taught social studies at Waco High School. “My dissertation grew out of my frustrations with the way economics was presented in the Texas social studies standards and wanting to find a way for economics to be more relevant and meaningful to students,” Shanks said. This study specifically dealt with pre-service teachers – students who are getting ready to become social studies teachers – and how they felt about economics in relation to their purpose for teaching social studies. Continue Reading →

February 11, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Baylor Senior Learns Research and Grad School Prep through Baylor McNair Scholars Program [02/11/2019]

Senior Olivia Moses presented her research on campus during the McNair Scholars Symposium last fall.

Many seniors feel the pressure of the unknown that inevitably comes as they anticipate life after college. For elementary education senior Olivia Moses, however, this pressure began to subside due to her involvement with the Baylor McNair Scholars Program.

Last fall, Moses was among Baylor’s first group of McNair Scholars, chosen after the program launched at Baylor. Over 150 other universities have the program, giving McNair students a broad network of resources and support.

The McNair Scholars Program is a federally funded program that helps low-income and first-generation undergraduates — as well as students who come from groups underrepresented in graduate education — prepare for the path to doctoral degree programs through a variety of scholarly activities, including immersion in research with a mentor. The program also provides financial planning for graduate school success, summer research internships with stipends, and the opportunity to attend academic conferences.

Moses found her place in the McNair program as an elementary education major conducting research on media literacy. For her research project, Moses analyzed the animated movie Megamind with a group of students that were participants in Baylor School of Education’s Freedom School program last summer. “The basic question is, ‘What experience do 10-11-year-olds have with analyzing and pulling out themes, and making media messages?’” Moses said. Megamind proved to be an interesting movie to work with, because the main character is a villain, rather than a hero. “There are a lot of topsy-turvy moments between good and evil, so I really wanted them to tackle that.” Continue Reading →

January 29, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Celebrating 100 Percent — SOE Grads Ace Certification Exams Again [01/29/2019]

By Dr. Krys Goree
Centennial Faculty Guest Blog

While Baylor School of Education is celebrating 100 years, we have another important “100” to celebrate — a 100% pass rate on certification exams by Baylor School of Education graduates!

The Baylor School of Education is celebrating its Centennial year of preparing teachers to go into the field of education equipped to make a positive difference in the lives of children, communities, the nation, and our world. As we reflect on the rich history of the Baylor School of Education, we celebrate many accomplishments, and there are certainly many to celebrate. One is the amazing success of the Baylor School of Education graduates on the examinations required to become educators.

The Texas State Board of Educator Certification report for the 2017 – 2018 has recently been released. And, once again, teacher education graduates of the Baylor School of Education boast a 100% pass rate on the examinations that are required for preservice teachers to be recommended for certification – 100% for both the content and pedagogy Texas Examinations of Educator Standards (TExES) tests! This is the fifth year in a row that Baylor School of Education graduates can claim a 100% pass rate.

READ MORE at Baylor.edu/SOE/100