Phase III placements will be concentrated in participating Partner Schools in Wyoming to the extent that district capacity allows. Research indicates that preservice teachers benefit from an academic experience that revolves around a partnership with University faculty, public school mentor teachers and the student teacher. In order to facilitate such a partnership, the CoEd is working closely with seven Wyoming school districts to provide such field experiences. Final placement decisions for Phase III applicants will be made collaboratively by CoEd faculty and Partner School district personnel. Administrative and logistic support for the placement process and for communication with candidates occurs in the Departments of Elementary/Early Childhood Education and Secondary Education, and the Office of Teacher Education (OTE). Once a placement is confirmed for you, you will receive a letter with the details of your grade/subject assignment, school/district assignment, mentor teacher name and contact information.
Candidates should take extra care in the compilation of the Phase III application. The application will be shared with the collaborative teams that make final placement decisions. Your application may be considered by one or more of the PLC teams depending upon factors that are outside your control (e.g., number of mentor teachers available in a particular content area, particular strengths of a mentor teacher, number of students needing a placement in your major content area).
Student teaching is an exciting part of the teacher education program...another step toward a successful teaching career. Research from several decades indicates that practicing teachers perceive this experience as the single most valuable experience of their teacher education program.
The student teacher, mentor teacher, and UW faculty comprise an educational team for this culminating field experience. Student teachers gradually assume increasing responsibilities in their assigned classroom(s), experiencing the excitement of teaching and learning as well as meeting the challenges of complex professional expectations. During this semester, student teachers will demonstrate for the other members of the educational team that the outcomes listed in the rubric have been met, as well as other WTEP residency expectations. All members (including the student teacher) of the educational team have responsibilities for this final phase of the teacher education program.
You will collaborate closely with your mentor teacher to plan the semester based on your level of preparedness and the unique context of your mentor teacher's students and classroom. You may be expected to take a secondary role, the lead role, or team-teach with the mentor teacher, keeping in mind that, above all, the students in these classrooms are the focus of every effort. The student teacher should become more independent as the semester continues and will ultimately assume full teaching responsibility to assure that all outcomes are met. The mentor teacher coaches and provides reflective opportunities throughout the entire semester, providing the daily critical feedback necessary for the transition to a successful teaching career.
During the semester, you may visit other classrooms, programs, and schools and you may need to interview teachers and administrators to meet the required outcomes. Since time away from the classroom must be carefully planned to ensure effective teaching and learning, you will need to schedule closely and communicate well with your mentor teacher. Ultimately, it is the responsibility of the student teacher to be aware of and meet all evaluation criteria and deadlines. Student teaching is a full-time job and you will be expected to participate in before or after school activities that your mentor teacher has as part of their regular duties (e.g., staff meetings, parent conferences, professional development workshops, school nights, etc.). We urge you to prepare for this final semester of your program by planning to focus 110% of your time and effort on your Residency experience. The Residency Handbook provides additional detail on the Residency experience and expectations.
This is a transition semester between college and work that allows you to focus on Teaching as a Profession while still under the guidance of the Residency team.