Classroom experience is elementary Community College, TSU join forces at Jessup Elementary

February 27, 1996|By TaNoah V. Sterling | TaNoah V. Sterling,SUN STAFF

Jessup Elementary School is getting more teachers' aides, and students from two colleges are gaining classroom teaching experience as part of a state program to strengthen education.

The state Department of Education gave the county school system $40,000 in June to form an 18-month partnership with Anne Arundel Community College and Towson State University.

Anne Arundel is the second community college in the state to join with a university and a public school system in a Professional Development School, which seeks to simultaneously train teachers and the students who will become teachers.

"The concept is that people are growing continuously," said Jessup Principal Rosemarie Thompson. "All levels of education connect."

Towson students began working at Jessup in June. Three seniors this semester are student teachers, planning lessons and attending staff meetings four days a week. Twenty-two juniors also are taking courses at the elementary school and spending a half-day as observers and aides in the classroom.

"I'm on the front edge of everything," said Fred Lucarelli, 31, a senior student teacher from Towson who teaches a kindergarten class. "In the classroom, it's just theory, but here [at Jessup] within 24 hours or so, we're using it."

Starting this fall, Anne Arundel Community College students will be offered three courses at Jessup Elementary one day a week. On other days, they will work as teachers' aides, practicing the theories they've learned in classroom.

When the Anne Arundel students arrive, Towson students will be their mentors. Several community college students already are volunteering at Jessup, working with the school guidance counselor, Ms. Thompson said.

The credits the community college students receive for courses and field experience at Jessup can be transferred to the Towson State Early Childhood Education program, should they decide to continue their undergraduate degree.

Anyone interested in joining the program at Anne Arundel Community College should contact Rosemary Wolfe, head of the school's Education Department, at 541-2416

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