UT Martin receives grant for professional development

UT Martin receives grant for professional development

Posted: Wednesday, February 2, 2011 12:09 pm

The Messenger 02.02.11

The Tennessee Higher Education Commission has awarded the University of Tennessee at Martin $75,000 for an Improving Teacher Quality Grant for Project Reading to Increase Comprehension in Academics (RICA).
This is the second year of funding for the project, coordinated by Dr. Beverly Hearn, associate professor of education.
Project RICA provides professional development for middle and high school teachers.
Twenty-four teachers will be chosen to participate this spring and summer in sessions that focus on the new core curriculum, using classroom libraries and methods for more effective teaching of reading and writing within the content area classrooms: science, social studies and mathematics.
“Results from the first year of the project demonstrated a 63.1 percent improvement in teachers’ knowledge of reading strategies for their students,” Dr. Hearn said.
In addition to the professional development, participants will select their own classroom library materials valued at $1,000 to provide additional reading materials to be used in developing their reading and writing activities.
Participating teachers will also receive an iPad and be trained in its use. The iPads will be used to access enrichment materials via electronic libraries and the web.
“UT Martin has a tradition of providing professional development through the ITQ program,” said Dr. Beth Quick, Department of Educational Studies chair. “In our rural area, the availability of high-quality professional development is very important for our educators. For Dr. Hearn to receive a second year of funding speaks to the success of the first year of Project RICA.”
Although UT Martin partnered with Crockett County Schools in developing the proposal, school teachers from other area districts are also eligible to apply. For more information about participation, interested teachers should contact Dr. Hearn at bhearn@utm.edu or (731) 881-7197.

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