rounds process gives them the collective confidence to engage their own students in learning (Del Prete, 1997). The rounds also reflect a shift toward more collaborative relationships, reflective dialogue, research, and study, and a process of open, active and continuous expansion of professional knowledge on the part of the entire community (Del Prete, 1997).
To better prepare prospective urban teachers, a consortium of four universities (University of Houston, Texas Southern University, Houston Baptist University, and University of St. Thomas), three school districts, and two intermediate school agencies designed and implemented a Professional Development School program located in several Houston area K-12 schools. The consortium has been operating for more than five years and uses twelve mutually agreed upon characteristics to guide its work, including flexibility, cultural diversity, learner-centered instruction, technology, and authentic assessment. Recently reported research on the model indicates that 43 percent of the teacher participants believe that they now teach differently, and classroom observations confirm this. Achievement levels for both the preservice candidates and their students have increased as well (Houston et al., 1999). Data from this 1999 study indicates that the Professional Development School program preservice candidate teachers interacted with students more often than preservice candidates who were not in the program. They also spent significantly more time responding to student signals, checking student work, encouraging student self-management, praising student performance and behavior, and correcting student performance.
Since 1989, Kansas State University’s College of Education has been engaged in partnerships with three local school districts, establishing Professional Development Schools in twelve elementary schools, four middle schools, and one high school. The Kansas State University (KSU) PDS Model is based on the belief that teacher preparation and school reform are the joint responsibility of institutions of higher education and school systems. All teachers and principals from the 17 PDS sites are now collaborative partners. The PDS and KSU faculty members are involved with all phases of the KSU teacher preparation program. At the building level, each PDS has identified at least one clinical instructor and KSU faculty member to