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April 11, 2014
CONTACT: K.E. Schwab

SRU hosts NSTS conference

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University's College of Education will host a National Student Teaching and Supervision Conference April 14-15 in the Smith Student Center. Herbert Hunt, a retired SRU assistant professor of elementary education and early childhood development, will be the keynote speaker. This is the eighth time SRU has hosted the event.

Registration opens at 8 a.m., April 14, and 8:30 a.m., April 15.

"This event is for sharing, learning and reflecting on the capstone experience in teacher education," said John Hicks, assistant professor of secondary education and foundations of education and co-chair for the two-day event.

"The conference committee has worked to put together an excellent program that includes something for everyone involved in the student-teaching experience, including university supervisors, cooperating teachers and student teachers," he said.

"We have lined up some excellent presentation participants, and we will be recognizing our annual 'Memorable Moments' essay writers at the Monday luncheon, said James Preston, assistant professor of elementary education and early childhood development, and program co-chair.

"Various student teachers will also be on hand to share poster presentations of their semester of student teaching," he said.

"We expect the conference will showcase the capstone event in teacher candidate preparation by providing professional educators with the opportunity to demonstrate best practices as they relate to the student-teaching experience and the enhancement of knowledge, skills and dispositions of teacher candidates," he said.

"We certainly welcome educators from across the country. This is an opportunity to share best practices, success stories and research findings for how to use student teaching to produce the best teachers possible," said A. Keith Dils, SRU College of Education dean.

More than 90 teachers from 30 universities, including those who are members of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education universities, Eastern, Bucknell, Wilkes, Robert Morris, Bethel, Waynesburg, West Virginia State, Bowling Green State, Pennsylvania State and Bethel universities, along with the University of Pittsburgh, La Roche, Grove City and Westminster colleges and others are expected to present break out sessions. A number of high school faculty presenters will also participate, including representatives from the Cranberry School District. A number of students will offer poster presentations as part of the program.

Hunt, who retired from SRU in 2013 after serving as assistant to the dean, has been an educator for more than four decades. He has a wide range of experiences, including service as an elementary teacher, elementary principal, executive secretary for two Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association organizations, university professor at both the graduate and undergraduate levels and university assistant dean.

He has served as a member of Pennsylvania Association of Colleges and Teacher Educators board and as president of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education Field Directors.

Hunt has hundreds of educational experiences in preschool through graduate school. These experiences involve working directly with students, parents, colleagues, school boards, higher education administrators and local, state and federal officials. He has numerous presentations at local, state and national conferences.

Since his retirement from SRU, Hunt has established a consulting organization that works to include business community support for educators through quality staff development programs.

His address is titled "Managing Managers: Working with administrators to create opportunities for students." He will also offer a session titled "Actively Engaging Students with Lecture."

Bernie Hoffman, a recognized leader in school law and court issues related to schools, will offer an all-day workshop for local school administrators focused on "Special Education Issues Related to School Law."

Other presentation topics include: "Motivational Strategies for Engaging Students in Writing;" "History Comes Alive Through College School Partnerships;" "Effective Supervision and Feedback Provision;" and "The Student Teacher Experience: How to apply the knowledge to the real life classroom," and others.

Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.