ERIC Number: ED420734
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
An Urban Public School and University Collaboration: What Makes a PDS?
Sosin, Adrienne; Parham, Ann
This paper describes the status and development of a school/university partnership from the point of view of the participants. Descriptions of the paths collaboration has taken, anecdotal recall, and reflections about working toward a collaborative relationship support comparisons of this relationship with the Professional Development School (PDS) models described by some researchers. The particular focus is on the effort to maintain and increase the relationship between the university's urban teacher education program and one urban elementary school. The PDS concept views the school as a learning community, and a central idea is that teacher learning and development support student learning. The university in question has urban and a suburban campuses. The suburban campus has committed to PDS relationships, and its programs have received both internal and external financial support. The urban campus has sponsored collaborative programs, but they have not reached the level of the PDS model. At the urban elementary school studied, relationships with the university have continued over 30 years. Student teaching and cooperating teacher support were the original bases for the collaboration, and they are still its most stable feature. The collaboration has not reached PDS status for several reasons, the first of which is a lack of acceptance for the concept of the PDS, which may be perceived as having negative impact on the mission of the school to educate its students. Another reason is that the university may be perceived as an ivory tower, rather than a realistic partner in education. The urban context and the competitive environment also pose barriers to creating a PDS relationship. A look at the experiences of this school leads to the conclusion that several factors are necessary for the establishment of a PDS: (1) clarity around issues of starting a PDS; (2) a focus on collaborative benefits to parents, students, student teachers, teachers, administration, and faculty; and (3) insulation from negative forces. To support the collaboration, communication, connection, and commitment are required. (Contains 1 figure and 14 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (San Diego, CA, April 13-17, 1998).