The History of UTEP from 1990 - Present
The Urban Teacher Education Program (UTEP) is a school-university partnership for professional teacher preparation and development. Collaborating institutions include the School City of East Chicago, East Chicago Federation of Teachers, Gary Community School Corporation, Gary Teachers’ Union, the School City of Hammond, Hammond Teachers’ Federation, and Indiana University Northwest.
The program has two options: Option I focuses on elementary education, and Option II prepares limited license teachers, substitutes, and second career people with non-education bachelor’s degrees for teaching certification. It is the mission of UTEP to improve the quality of urban education through the preparation of teachers to create a cooperative and supportive environment in which university and classroom faculty work as partners in urban professional development schools (PDS).
Since the inception of UTEP, there were PDC’s (Professional Development Centers) in 1990. The first such site was Lincoln Elementary School, in East Chicago. The program then expanded to include, Eggers Middle School of Hammond and Horace Mann High School, of Gary in 1990-1991. In 1993-1994, new sites were formed at Franklin Elementary in Gary and East Chicago’s Central High School. Eggers Middle School continued to be Hammond’s site, but in 1996 the elementary site was moved to Drew School in Gary. Currently, we have PDS (Professional Development Schools) sites at Central High School, Caldwell Elementary School, Clark Middle/High School in Hammond, and Ernie Pyle in Gary. The Bernard Watson Academy for boys, formerly Charles Drew Elementary School, continues to serve as an associate site, in combination with the girl’s academy, Frankie Woods McCullough and Block and Westside Middle Schools in East Chicago. In addition, overflow sites have been used at Morton High School, and Scott Middle Schools of Hammond, and Tolleston Middle School of Gary. Other sites, such as the Gary Career Center have been used by limited licensed teachers as they completed their field and student teaching requirements.
UTEP is recognized by the Indiana Department of Education as a fully accredited alternative route to certification.
UTEP, with the support of all its partner school corporations, is expanding to accommodate program changes in the school of Education and the impending teacher shortages in the Districts. The PDS will continue to be an essential part of that growth and development as we strive to prepare quality teachers for urban schools and provide them with updated research in urban education that is a key component in keeping our program strong.