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Roanoke City Schools and Roanoke College emphasize collaboration in teacher preparation



Roanoke, Virginia – Early in March, schools throughout the nation observe Read Across America Week.
Encouraging a love of reading in their students is the aim.

This year, at one public school in Roanoke City, the celebration took on a new significance.

In one classroom, Roanoke College President Frank Shushok read aloud to second graders, while school superintendent Verletta White sat down with them.

In addition to honoring Read Across America Week, the celebration at Monterey Elementary School highlighted the efforts of both organizations to prepare the next generation of teachers.

Danville is where Madeline Higgins was raised. She finished her first semester of student teaching in the city of Roanoke last semester, and she is currently in her third year at Roanoke College.

“So I taught at J.P. Fishwick Middle School with eighth graders, and it was the best experience of my life,” Higgins told WDBJ7.

Additionally, Roanoke College has declared that it will launch a new Master of Education program, which may prove advantageous for educators who are now working in classrooms.

“We’re already providing that pipeline with our undergrad licensure programs,” said Dr. Lisa Stoneman, Chair of the Education Department at Roanoke College, “but we feel like our new masters will help grow leaders who want to stay in the community and really take on the challenges that are facing education right now.”

Strong collaboration is benefiting Roanoke College and Roanoke City Public Schools, according to Shushok and White.

“These are the kinds of things that we’re trying to invite really talented people to think about how transformational it is to be a teacher,” Shushok told reporters.

“We want the best of the best in front of our students and we want those who are interested and invested in the Roanoke community as well,” White said.

The Master of Education program will be offered by Roanoke College starting in the autumn. Only the second graduate degree program has been offered by Roanoke College.


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