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Press Release for Tuesday, January 26, 2010

UNF Dean Appointed to Expert Panel on Clinical Preparation

Joanna Norris, Assistant Director

Department of Media Relations and Events

(904) 620-2102



Dr. Larry Daniel, dean of the College of Education and Human Services at the University of North Florida, has been appointed by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) to serve on a Blue Ribbon Panel on Clinical Preparation, Partnerships and Improved Student Learning, signaling the beginning of changes in the preparation of the nation’s teachers.


The NCATE Blue Ribbon Panel on Clinical Preparation, Partnerships and Improved Student Learning will culminate in recommendations for restructuring the preparation of teachers to reflect teaching as a practice-based profession similar to medicine, nursing or clinical psychology. The panel will issue a report of its findings and recommendations when its work is completed, most likely near the end of 2010.


Practice-based professions require not only a solid academic base, but strong clinical components, a supported induction experience, and ongoing opportunities for learning. This redesign is intended to bring educator preparation into better alignment with the urgent needs of P-12 schools. Such changes in the way teachers and other P-12 educators are prepared potentially have far-ranging effects on the structure of schools of education.


“I am honored to serve as a member of NCATE’s Blue Ribbon Panel. This panel represents strong voices from a variety of constituencies interested in the quality of teachers in America,” said Daniel, a Fruit Cove resident. “As we continue to build excellence in teacher education, it is important that we focus on the school-based component of teacher education. The excellent work we do at UNF preparing teachers to work in challenging diverse school environments is among the best anywhere and is an excellent model, along with other outstanding programs, for determining the standards of excellence that will be expected in the field in the future.”


Significantly enhanced clinical preparation may mean, for example, more extensive use of simulations, case studies, analyses of teaching and other approximations of teaching, as well as sustained, intense, mentored school-embedded experiences. Enhanced clinical preparation should give aspiring teachers the opportunity to integrate theory with practice; develop and test classroom management and pedagogical skills; hone their use of evidence in making professional decisions about practice; and understand and integrate the standards of their professional community.


The Panel will examine characteristics and elements of clinical preparation in exemplary programs, will review the research, and will make recommendations as to how those characteristics and elements can be supported in policy and through funding formulas at every level -- school, district, state and federal. The aim is to move from islands of innovation which are driving student achievement in certain schools or districts to a culture in which excellence is the norm.

Daniel, whose career in education spans 30 years, is a credible voice representing teacher educators in Florida. He has been invited to speak to the Florida Board of Education, the Florida Higher Education Board of Governors, and committees of the Florida Legislature. In addition to serving as dean, he also serves as a professor in the Department of Leadership, Counseling, and Instructional Technology at UNF.


As dean, he provides direction to the College and its approximately 100 employees, including 80 full-time faculty, and administers an $8 million annual budget. Daniel also collaborates with schools and agencies regarding the College’s urban professional development school programs and other issues relative to professional development of educators. He teaches courses in educational administration, educational research, and statistics and is a member of the graduate and doctoral faculties.


Daniel presently serves as president-elect of the Teacher Education Council of State Colleges and Universities. He also serves on various professional/community advisory boards for the Schultz Center for Teaching and Leadership, Duval County Public Schools, and Communities in Schools–Jacksonville. He has previously served in various leadership roles in other professional organizations, including president of the Southwest Educational Research Association, member of the Research Advisory Board of the National Middle School Association, and member of the Special Interest Group Executive Committee of the American Educational Research Association.


NCATE accredits 667 schools, colleges and departments of education, which produce two-thirds of the nation’s new teacher graduates annually in the United States, and is recognized as a specialized accrediting body by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.