Posted by austinyogamama on August 5, 2008 at 7:49 PM
This is my thought. This has always been my thought really, but it got derailed during my masters project. Possibly now I might be in a better position to make it all happen.
Texas State University, as an institution that graduates a substantial number of the teachers in the state of Texas, has a responsibility to have program content that is relavant to the population of Texas. This being said, Texas has an enormous need for bilingual teachers, teachers who are culturally competent and able to communicate in an authentic way that reaches the parents. I do not need to point out that the population of students who have the highest attrition rate in the south. These students and families have special needs that can be met by the school, but only with support from the University level to the local school district to the parents in the neighborhood schools.
Casa Xelaju in Quetzaltenango Guatemala and Kukulcan in Cuernavaca Mexico could be utilized as sister schools to provide in depth trainnig for those teachers who wish to work in these nieghborhood schools, but who lack the opportunity for specialized training at the University level. We currently have the ability (and in my opinion the respinsibility) to move forward with formalizing a bilingual7bicultural program for masters degree and doctoral seeking students in the college of education. Dr. John Beck agreed with this sentiment and I would like to pursue this with the current Dean of the College Dr. Herrera.
Texas State currently has a well documented and publisahed action research program under the leadership of Dr. Davis. There is no reason why the University could not sponsor a program that allowed for these students to work during 3 summers with the students in Guatemala and Mexico for 4 to 6 weeks each time (for a total of 100 to 150 contact hours) and earn course credit for it. I would LOVE (in fact it is the reason for my return to the University) to head up this program with the help of Dr. Waite and possibly Dr. Brooks and the sanction of Dr. Herrera. I would like to develop this program and present it to the accrediting agency for inclusion in the College degree offerings starting in 2012.