UAlbany to Create Web-Based
Literacy Materials for High School English Teachers
Contact: Lisa James Goldsberry (518) 437-4980
ALBANY, N.Y. (December 22, 2004) - The University
at Albany's Center on English Learning and Achievement
(CELA) has received a $150,000 grant from the
Arthur Vining Davis Foundations to provide web-based
professional development materials to high school
English teachers. The award will be used to
adapt a web-based guide for middle school English
teachers produced by CELA, for teachers at the
high school level. The guide is called Supporting
Student Literacy Learning: A Program of Instructional
and Professional Development.
The guide focuses on a set of multi-linked
topics, such as building comprehension by helping
students develop deeper understandings of what
they read, and fostering reading, writing, and
thinking skills with high-level class discussions.
Adaptations to the guide will involve replacing
the current middle school-appropriate literary
examples with those suitable for high school,
as well as inserting examples of student work,
samples of teacher plans, and video clips (on
CD) from high school classrooms.
"The flexibility of the guide allows schools
to tackle their individual areas of highest
need. Twice each year, CELA facilitators will
assign a particular topic, and one of its leading
researchers or other nationally recognized expert
will facilitate the ensuing online discussion,"
said Judith Langer, SUNY Distinguished Professor
and director of CELA. "The approach is
one of blended e-learning and draws on the University's
leadership in distance learning, including online
courses, as well as the center's considerable
experience facilitating online discussions and
virtual professional communities."
The Center on English Learning and Achievement
has been creating and testing the effectiveness
of a professional development program that strengthens
teachers' ability to increase students' reading,
writing, and other language skills as measured
on state standardized tests, in other assessments
of reading and writing, and through class work.
The Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, based
in Jacksonville, Florida, are a national philanthropic
organization established through the generosity
of the late American industrialist, Arthur Vining
Davis. The purpose of the foundations is to
provide financial assistance to certain educational,
cultural, scientific and religious institutions
within the United States. Arthur Vining Davis
became president of the Aluminum Company of
America in 1910 and served as chairman of the
board for many years.
For information about CELA, visit http://cela.albany.edu.