Institute for Urban and Minority Education
Teachers College, Columbia University
Teachers College
Columbia University

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Attend the 3rd Annual Edmund Gordon Lecture

Don't miss this annual tradition in the honor of IUME Founder Dr. Edmund Gordon, which is now in its 3rd year. In this lecture, esteemed scholar Professor Sonia Nieto reflects on her life as a teacher, curriculum developer, mentor, ethnic studies instructor, researcher, and professor of teacher educator to draw a number of significant lessons about public education and its future for the most vulnerable students as well as for the nation. Dr. Nieto's talk is entitled, "50 Years in Public Education: Reflections on a Fulfilled Life" and will be in Milbank Chapel at Teachers College, Columbia University.

For more information and to RSVP, please click here. 

RSVP to our first IUME Colloquia of the year!

Come to our first IUME Colloquium of the 2015-2016 academic year, featuring one of IUME's most accomplished graduate students, Research Fellow Cati de los Ríos. Cati's talk, entitled "Literacies of Power: Exploring Transnational Youths' Multilingual and Multiliterate Reportoires in a High School Latin@ Studies Course" will take place Thursday, October 15, at 3pm in Zankel 2014. Cati's work is powerful and timely, and we encourage you to come to attend this great event!
To RSVP for Cati's talk and for more details, please click here.

IUME Director Ernest Morrell's NCTE Presidential Address Published

IUME Director Ernest Morrell's 2014 NCTE Presidential Address has just been published by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE). Morrell served as NCTE President from 2013-2014, and at this year's annual conference in Boston, he gave the annual President Address as a capstone to the conference. Congratulations once again for completing his Presidential year at NCTE and leading--and inspiring--tens of thousands of English teachers nationwide!

Click here
to read the recently published speech on the NCTE website and click here to watch a recorded video of his speech on the IUME YouTube channel.

Learn More About IUME's Literacy Teachers Initiative (LTI) Project

 IUME was excited to announce the launch of the Literacy Teachers Initiative (LTI) Project in spring, 2012. Since then, we have partnered with dynamic elementary and middle school teachers from Harlem and Brooklyn in an effort to collaboratively work toward finding increased pedagogical methods for students. The LTI Project is led by Dr. Jodene Morrell of Teachers College. We have grown in number and ideas each year, received competitive research grants, presented at Teachers College and state, national, and international conferences, and written for publication.

Check out our LTI page for more information and check out the biographies of the Teacher Fellows here!

Welcome to our newest IUME Postdoctoral and Faculty Fellows!

We are excited to welcome our newest group of accomplished and innovative IUME Fellows who will be working with us this year. Our IUME Faculty Fellows include Dr. Brian Lozenski, from Metropolitan State University, and Deron Wallace, from the University of Cambridge. In addition, Teachers College's Minority Postdoctoral Fellow, Dr. Monique Lane, from the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA), will also be be a part of IUME research this year.

Learn more about them on our Faculty Fellow page and Postdoctoral Fellow page.

Learn More about the Youth Historians in Harlem Program!

The Youth Historians in Harlem (YHH) project, sponsored by IUME, is a new critical approach to teaching history in urban schools in Harlem, focusing on empowering minority youth through their own cultural experiences, involving students in the practice of "doing" history through guided projects, programs, and participatory action research. YHH seeks to increase students' interest in history through innovative and engaging pedagogical approaches that help them become historians, researching the rich historical past of ‘their’ Harlem community. While YHIH seeks to advance the historical knowledge of education in Harlem, above all, our project seeks to make history relevant to urban students and help increase academic achievement. To learn more about this exciting project, visit the official website here.

Subscribe to our IUME YouTube Channel!

Have you visited the official IUME YouTube page recently? Want to learn more about IUME? Make sure to stop by our YouTube page here and watch a few of our videos and subscribe!. Not only do we keep a collection of IUME events and Colloquia, but our video team prepares short clips on critical research. The most recent Beyond Bullying presentation is now available, as is our December Colloquium and other great clips that should be shared!

In our increasingly digital and mutlimodal era, we believe strongly in collaborative educational content, so make sure to check back often and subscribe to your channel.


Announcements > Director Ernest Morrell Installed as Vice President of NCTE

Director Ernest Morrell Installed as Vice President of NCTE

IUME Director Ernest Morrell was recently appointed the Vice President of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE). Read the article below featured in the Press Room at Teachers College, Columbia University

New IUME Director Elected to Leadership of National Literacy Coalition

By Patricia Lamiell via Teachers College, Columbia University Press Room

Ernest Morrell, who is the incoming director of Teachers College’s Institute for Urban Minority Education (IUME) as well as a nationally prominent scholar in literacy, critical pedagogy, cultural studies, urban education and ethnic studies, has been elected vice president of the National Council of Teachers of English, the preeminent organization of literacy educators in the United States.

Morrell will be installed in November at the council’s annual meeting in Chicago, beginning a four-year tenure of leadership. After serving for a year as vice president, he will be named incoming president, then president, and finally immediate past president of the organization, each for one-year terms. He was elected through a balloting of NCTE’s 35,000 members.

Morrell said he was “awed” by his election, noting that NCTE, a powerful advocate for literacy, includes not just individual members but also many education and trade organizations that help to shape curricula, policy and teaching in statehouses and in the nation’s capitol. “These professional organizations have the potential to really have a lot of sway in Washington, D.C.,” he said.

Morrell said his leadership of IUME and NCTE, combined with his position  as professor of English Education in the Arts and Humanities Department at TC, will present many opportunities to advocate for and shape literacy education, particularly in urban settings, and to help translate education research into usable data for policymakers and educators. His mission in all three positions, he said, will be to help turn “theory into practice,  provide a place where research meets policy,” and conduct “a dialogue in real time about what’s happening in IUME, Harlem, TC, and the nation, to address the problems of literacy,” which he called “a matter of life and death.”

Despite all the negative talk about the state of America’s education system, “there are all these amazing classrooms” that could be studied and replicated across the country, Morrell said. He also plans to use his position with NCTE to influence the national discussion about assessments, or testing. Literacy, for example, should be assessed more broadly than reading and writing and include other types of communication. His tenure as president of NCTE will have the theme, “powerful communications technology,” he said. “A blueprint for reform has to make education relevant socially and culturally.” 
Morrell is assuming the vice presidency in the organization’s centennial year. NCTE was founded in Chicago in 1911 by English-language and literacy educators to improve the teaching and learning of English and the language arts at all levels of education. According to a mission statement adopted in 1990, the council "promotes the development of literacy, the use of language to construct personal and public worlds and to achieve full participation in society, through the learning and teaching of English and the related arts and sciences of language.”

Sheridan Blau, distinguished senior lecturer in English education at TC, wrote in an e-mail that Morrell’s presidency “is an opportunity to influence the entire profession of English education and to provide wise guidance to policy makers on issues of language and literacy locally and nationally. [It] will be celebrated by all of us in English education at TC and by professionally active English teachers at every level across the country.”

According to a history being written for the council’s centennial, Morrell is the fifth NCTE president affiliated with Teachers College. The others include Franklin T. Baker in 1914, Allan Abbott in 1917, Lennox Grey in 1952, and Kylene Beers (formerly affiliated with TC’s Reading & Writing Project) in 2009.

Morrell is leaving a faculty position at the Urban Schooling Division of the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) to become a tenured, full professor at TC. He brings to NCTE and IUME a wealth of research and teaching experience at the university level and with adolescents in urban settings.

At UCLA, Morrell has worked with high school students in Los Angeles on in-school and out-of-school literacy instruction, cultural studies, and civic involvement. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of California at Santa Barbara and a doctorate in language, literacy and culture from University of California at Berkeley. He taught high school English and coached basketball, track and field, and cross country in  Oakland, California, where he was born.

Morrell succeeds IUME’s founding director, Edmund Gordon, professor emeritus at TC and Yale. Gordon launched the institute in 1973 to research the impact of race, gender, language, and social and economic class on learning, and then apply the research toward strengthening curriculum, pedagogy and student assessment.

While IUME will remain actively engaged in Harlem, where its offices are headquartered at Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard and 125th Street, Morrell plans to extend the institute’s reach to other urban areas across the country as well, by applying IUME’s philosophy and classroom prowess, combined with TC’s research capabilities and models of best teaching practices, to NCTE’s national campaign to increase literacy among all students.

In a position paper written for NCTE, Morrell writes, “If we tap into the everyday, literate lives of our students; if we resource teachers and classrooms [and] give them sound examples of success; and if we provide for autonomy and voice simultaneously, we will help to realize this ambitious and worthwhile goal of increasing literacy and college access for all of our students.” 

To view the interview with Morrell, go to
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