The Metropolitan State University School of Urban Education will prepare diverse, reflective, and resilient teachers who are outstanding in their commitment and ability to meet the needs of historically and currently underserved urban learners, schools, and communities. The School of Urban Education will collaborate with partners to assure that culturally and linguistically diverse urban learners experience high academic achievement from preschool through college.
The mission of the School of Urban Education is twofold:
- To increase the number of well-prepared teachers of color in Minneapolis, Saint Paul and inner-ring suburbs so that the urban teaching workforce reflects the ethnically diverse population of students and their communities; and
- To empower urban teachers with the content knowledge, pedagogical skills, urban field experiences, and professional dispositions needed to improve the educational achievement of historically and currently underserved urban learners and to advocate for their right to receive a high quality education.
To accomplish our mission, we will:
- Actively recruit, advise and retain teacher candidates of color using multiple approaches consistent with Metropolitan State philosophy to exceed the expectation set forth by the Minnesota Legislature in 2000 that our new Urban Teacher Program would "enroll at least 50 percent students of color." (Article 11, Section 1, Subd 4 of H.F No. 3800, 5th Engrossment: 81st Legislative Session, May 11, 2000).
- Develop and maintain partnerships with all colleges and units within Metropolitan State University to provide School of Urban Education students with the curriculum, advising, services and other support to achieve our mission and guiding principles as exemplified by our collaboration with the College of Arts and Sciences for secondary education programs.
- Collaborate with Minneapolis Community and Technical College as well as Inver Hills Community College and other two-year institutions to recruit and prepare persons of color, first-generation college students, and other non-traditional or historically under-represented students for successful completion of the program. These collaborations will include ongoing assessment of the program.
- Partner with Minneapolis, St. Paul and inner-ring suburban educators, schools, organizations, and communities to provide extensive, high-quality field experiences and professional development to pre-service and in-service teachers in diverse urban classrooms and communities. These partnerships and experiences enrich the School of Urban Education curriculum, provide teacher candidates with ongoing mentoring from professional urban educators, and create opportunities for ongoing continuous improvement of the program.
- Expect and demonstrate respect for urban learners, their development, their families and their communities with "unconditional positive regard" and a focus on their assets and resiliency.
- Nurture critical thinking, intellectual curiosity, and knowledge about the subjects that are taught to urban learners while modeling passion for life-long learning.
- Embed multicultural perspectives throughout all courses and practicum experiences in ways that respect the rich diversity of urban learners and families and increase the abilities of teacher candidates to meet the needs of those with whom they work. Such diversity includes but is not limited to culture, race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, economic class, exceptionality, gender, and sexual orientation.
- Demonstrate commitment to equity by understanding past and present disparities and partnering with various under-served and under-represented urban communities and community organizations to create equitable learning experiences for all urban youth.
- Help teacher candidates integrate professional, social-cultural, instructional, and subject matter competence required by standards for teacher licensure and the needs of urban schools.
- Use data, standards, assessment and reflection with students, partners and stakeholders in a transparent and responsive way to improve instruction and programs.
- Have diverse faculty and staff who represent, reflect upon and model the vision, mission and guiding principles of the School of Urban Education.