The U.S. Department of Education announced today the award of a $5 million grant to the University of Florida to establish a center to support the development of effective educators to serve students with disabilities.
The Collaboration for Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform (CEDAR) Center in Gainesville, Fla., will support the development of effective educators to serve students with disabilities, by engaging states to develop standards, reform teacher and leader preparation, and incorporate student outcomes into program evaluation.
“These funds will help equip teachers and other personnel with the skills to serve students who have unique needs,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. “The grants ensure their training is based on the latest research in proven practices for special education instruction.”
Key areas of focus for this center include:
Providing technical assistance to State educational agencies (SEAs) in reviewing and reforming certification or licensure standards, in order to ensure that these standards are derived from practices determined through evidence-based research and that they reflect the knowledge and skills necessary for teachers and leaders to be effective in serving students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms and school settings;
Provide technical assistance to restructure and improve teacher and leader preparation programs in order to align program requirements with the reformed certification or licensure standards and ensure that program graduates have the knowledge and skills necessary to address the diverse needs of students with disabilities; and
Provide technical assistance to improve special education teacher preparation programs by using data on outcomes for students with disabilities that are linked to data on special education teachers.