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UMES Hosts National Testing Conference

  • Thursday, November 4, 2010

    PRINCESS ANNE, MD - (Nov. 5, 2010) - The University of Maryland Eastern Shore's Department of Education is hosting a national conference Nov. 8 for colleagues who train primary and secondary teachers and the people who hire them.

    Educators from Historically Black Colleges and Universities in 10 states and Washington, D.C. will spend the day at UMES' Richard A. Henson Center discussing the latest research findings and learning new teacher-preparation strategies.

     "It's important for the public to know that we have a finger on the pulse of what's happening in education," said Dr. Michael Nugent, who coordinates UMES' teacher-credential preparation.

    Public policymakers and school leaders from across Delmarva also will participate in the 15th Collaboration Conference sponsored by the Educational Testing Service, a nonprofit that administers PRAXIS tests that most teachers must pass to earn their K-12 credentials.

    ETS has been working with HBCUs since 2003 on "the dual challenges of improving teaching quality and student achievement," an ETS spokeswoman said. The goal, she said, is to boost the number of "qualified minority teachers gaining licensure for K-12 classroom teaching."

    An estimated 75 participants at the UMES conference will attend seminars and hear speakers discuss best practices for preparing teacher candidates and receive a briefing from ETS about developments in teacher licensure testing.

    The UMES event is particularly timely, Nugent noted, because the federal government is awarding millions of dollars in grants "designed to encourage and reward states that are creating the conditions for education innovation and reform" to improve student achievement and prepare them for college.

    Delaware received $100 million in "Race to the Top" funding; while Maryland recently qualified for $250 million.

    For more information about the conference, contact Dr. Michael A. Nugent at 410-651-8362 or


    Bill Robinson, UMES Office of Public Relations, 410-621-2355,