In the fall of 2018, the Center for Professional Education partnered with UTC’s School of Education to provide an ACT test prep course for Tyner Academy’s Future Ready Institute: Teaching as a Profession Pathway.

The student cohort recently received their test scores with 92% seeing increases in their ACT scores. One student’s ACT score increased by five points while another student showed a gain of 10 points. At least 60% of students are now eligible for admission to UTC compared to the previous estimate of 33%.

“We want to get more students to college and through college while preparing more students of color as teacher candidates,” Kendra Duncan, edTPA Coordinator and Clinical Supervisor for UTC’s School of Education states.

Tyner Academy’s student population is 95% students of color, and the Teaching as a Profession Pathway helps shape a more diverse teacher population. With the Future Ready Institute, students have more ownership over their learning and are being exposed to career opportunities that they might not have considered.

For students to take their next step, a standardized test, the ACT, is typically in order. However, standardized testing can hinder students’ progression. Duncan states, “What we found is that standardized testing is a barrier for our students finishing our teacher preparation program as well as getting admitted to UTC or college. We identified that as a need we wanted to support and that is why we reached out to CPE.”

CPE provided four workshops to the cohort. Students covered every component of the ACT test: math, English, reading, and science.  Students learned problem-solving strategies and ways to eliminate wrong answers. “I’ve been in education for over twenty-two years, so I’ve seen quite a few ACT prep workshops. This ACT prep series is the best I’ve seen,” Duncan states.

CPE is truly honored to support Tyner Academy and the Teaching as a Profession Pathway. John Freeze, Director, states, “It is moments like these and hearing students are now eligible for college admission, reminds me why I do what I do.”