Howard University Hosts International Delegation of Educators

By Brittany Bailer

Last week, the Howard University School of Education hosted an international delegation of education leaders before the annual International Summit of the Teaching Profession. During the delegation’s visit, Howard was the only institution of higher learning on their trip.

Representatives from 23 countries joined the delegation, including Ana Lemström, special adviser to the Ministry of Education and Culture in Finland, Mun See Tham, executive director of the Academy of Singapore teachers, and many more. Dawn G. Williams, PhD, dean of the School of Education, kicked off the morning by presenting an overview of the history of Howard University, the importance of HBCUs in America, and the School of Education’s preparation model.

“We affirm the value of diversity. We don’t just focus on why children aren’t achieving; we look at the students that are achieving and try to model those behaviors and dispositions. We have a social justice-oriented mission that prepares us to be highly qualified teachers and reflective practitioners,” said Williams.

Undergraduate and graduate students of the School of Education sat on a panel to share their experiences researching and training in the field. Since mental health influences the effectiveness of teaching, the panel focused on the importance of wellness training for teaching professionals.

“A lot of schools are designating time for social emotional learning activities in their morning meetings so that we’re not going straight into teaching at the start of the day, but we’re having a checkpoint of how they are because it’s going to affect learning and how they show up. Teachers have been using social emotional activities to engage students so that they have a sense of self prior to going into teaching,” said Juliet Adams, junior elementary education student.

Following the presentation, the delegation visited the Early Learning Program and toured campus grounds. The remainder of their visit included trips to other D.C. schools and appearing at the International Summit of the Teaching Profession, hosted by the United States Department of Education.