Nebraska leaders join national discussion on secondary mathematics teacher education

The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), is an organization that represents more than 200 of the nation's most prestigious research universities. APLU has a task force focused on STEM education issues titled the Science and Mathematics Teacher Imperative (SMTI), which advocates that America's research universities become more involved in educating high quality math and science teachers.

Over the past year, SMTI has increased their engagement with mathematics through the creation of the Mathematics Teacher Education Partnership (MTE-Partnership) under the leadership of Gary Martin of Auburn University and Howard Gobstein, Executive Vice President of APLU. In the summer of 2011, APLU received a grant from the National Science Foundation to create the MTE-Partnership. Jim Lewis, Principal Investigator for NebraskaMATH, is on the MTE-Partnership Planning Committee. The national partnership has an advisory board that includes Deborah Ball, Dean of the University of Michigan School of Education; Joan Leitzel, President Emerita of the University of New Hampshire and Chair of the NebraskaMATH National Advisory Board; Bill McCallum, University of Arizona and lead writer of the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics; and Mike Shaughnessy, President of the NCTM.

The MTE-Partnership ( describes itself as "a partnership of institutions of higher education and K-12 schools, districts, and other organizations working collaboratively to redesign secondary mathematics teacher preparation programs." Thus, it is for this purpose that representatives from UNL, UNO, UNK and K-12 school districts Lincoln Public Schools, Omaha Public Schools and Kearney Public schools have partnered to form NebraskaMATH –STEP in order to participate in the MTE-Partnership.

MTE-Partnership goals include:
• building consensus on guiding principles underlying secondary mathematics teacher preparation programs;
• developing and undertaking a collaborative research and development agenda necessary to support programs built on the guiding principles; and
• catalyzing the transformation of SMTP programs nationally by: (i) stimulating use of model programs and practices created by the partnership within SMTI and other institutions, and (ii) promoting changes in state’s program approval, accreditation, and other policies necessary to support the necessary changes.

The first MTE-Partnership national conference was held March 25-27, 2012 in Atlanta. NebraskaMATH-STEP was represented by Lewis, Angela Hodge (UNO) and Jim Harrington (OPS). At the conference, representatives from over 30 states participated in the development of a set of guiding principles for high quality secondary mathematics teacher education.

The guiding principles are now being revised and will be shared by the NebraskaMATH-STEP partnership in the coming months. Professor Martin will visit Nebraska on May 14 and 15, 2012, to discuss MTE-Partnership with the Nebraska partnership.

More details at: