Formed in 1984, the Brigham Young University-Public School Partnership is a collaborative effort of three entities: (1) five public school districts (Alpine, Jordan, Nebo, Provo and Wasatch), (2) the McKay School of Education, and (3) the arts and sciences colleges and departments at BYU that participate in preparing secondary teachers.
The foundational principle of the Partnership states that improvement of public education requires teacher training institutions and public schools to collaborate in simultaneously improving teacher education and K-12 student learning. Participating school districts educate about one-third of Utah’s school children (approximately 180,000) and employ over 7,000 teachers. Brigham Young University annually graduates approximately 800 teachers and 40 school administrators.
The Governing Board for the Partnership includes the superintendents of the five participating school districts, the dean of the McKay School of Education, and the executive director of CITES (the Partnership's facilitating unit). This board collaboratively identifies needs that can be most effectively addressed by the combined efforts of the university and school districts. For organizational purposes, Partnership initiatives are grouped under three categories: professional development, education support, and research and publications.
The effectiveness of the BYU-Public School Partnership is due to mutual trust and respect of the partners as relationships are built, resources are shared, and collaboration and honest communication are achieved. Through this process, growth and improvement continue, bringing about positive change in teacher education as well as student learning--at both the university and public school levels.
CITES: Established in 1996, the Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling is the operational unit of the Partnership, serving to facilitate its goals and objectives. Through its three divisions--professional development, education support, and education research--the Center serves the needs of all three partnership entities.
EPP: The Educator Preparation Program is a collaborative unit which prepares undergraduate secondary teaching majors or minors. The EPP consists of the McKay School of Education and seven other BYU colleges, comprising 26 departments.