Annual address covers college

The second annual State of the College of Education Address covered both internal unity and external partnerships Monday evening in the Reilly Room.

The address is meant to update COE members about what is going on in the college.

COE Dean Ena Shelley opened the address by discussing how all members of COE have a valuable role to play and that there should be no separation between faculty and students.

Shelley then went on to discuss yearly data for the college, which now houses 458 undergraduates and 123 graduates.

Shelley said she enjoys leading the college.

“I have the best job in the world,” Shelley said.

She went on explain how her faculty and staff are fantastic and the students are doing “remarkable and heroic work.”

She said that part of the COE vision states that the college “believes we must prepare our students for schools as they should be, not simply perpetuating schools as they currently exist.”

This segued into a presentation by Ron Smith and Connie Sherman regarding the Butler University Lab School.

Smith is the principal of the lab school, and Sherman is the director at Saint Mary’s Child Center.

The lab school functions on four principles: diversity, collaboration, research and continuation of service.

These four aspects have molded the school and the child center, and Smith said that through this partnership, they are serving children from a different socio-economic background.

Katie Brooks, an assistant professor of education, then spoke about the English Language Learners program and its impact on the COE and students.

She discussed how there have been significant results from the interaction among faculty members and between faculty members and students.

She also said there have been significant positive  results in test scores from the students under the ELL program.

The next aspect presented was the upcoming innovation of a smartphone app for educators.

The app is being developed by Arthur Hochman, a professor of education, and Kelli Esteves, an assistant professor of education, with help from some students.

This app will be useful for all educators from preschools and high schools to the college-level environments.

Mindy Welch, professor of physical education, presented data about the physical education program here at Butler and talked about how program participants are required to go through a fitness test to make sure they are all within the healthy fitness zone.

One of the standards of the program states that the students must “achieve and maintain a health-enhancing level of fitness throughout the program.”

All of the students in the program did exceptionally well, and Welch said it makes them role models for young children, especially when it comes to physical education.

Two students, Abby Soltis and Jessica Blackport, then talked about their experiences with the Butler Summer Institute.

In her research, Soltis looked closely at the use of technology in fieldwork involving environmental science.

She said that through her explorations she realized that teachers are researchers.

Blackport investigated dining programs in schools, where she looked at how schools were providing healthy options and how school dining programs could be improved.

Both of the girls explained that they had a wonderful learning experience by participating in the summer institute program.

The rest of the address was dedicated to further discussing all the different impacts COE has made  on the community and the students it reaches.

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