May 15, 2019 - 9:45am
A Vancouver Island University (VIU) Education professor is being recognized with a provincial award for her transformative teaching approach and collaboration efforts.
VIU Professor Paige Fisher received the Teacher Educator award from the Association of BC Deans of Education (ABCDE) in recognition for her efforts in partnering with a teacher education program in British Columbia (BC).
“Educational change is my passion,” she says. “We have a successful system, but we are not where we need to be. I am committed to creating meaningful learning environments for our students, and I feel honored to receive this award in recognition of that.”
Fisher is creating educational change with her current research collaboration called the 6 Campus Communities of Pedagogical Inquiry Project, a learning partnership that includes the BC Ministry of Education, six BC post-secondary Faculties of Education and school districts across the province. The project’s goal is to support educational transformation while implementing BC’s redesigned curriculum. What this looks like when put into practice is bringing student teachers into the schools to engage with practicing teachers in school-based change processes.
“Instead of teaching on campus in a controlled classroom setting, we are bringing our student-teachers out into the schools to experience the curriculum in an authentic context,” says Fisher.
This model has proven to be a mutually beneficial project; the student-teachers get meaningful, experiential learning opportunities and the practicing teachers get additional support in their classrooms. Together, they are working to create positive change for the students.
Fisher, who has worked at VIU for almost 11 years, says she made the switch from teacher to university professor in hopes of being at the forefront of where change begins.
“If you want to create change in the system, you need to work with the people who will be making that change,” she says.
“Paige Fisher is a leader in BC Teacher Education,” says David Paterson, Dean of VIU’s Faculty of Education. “Her interests in teacher inservice, international education and rural teacher development has helped increase VIU’s capacity to provide meaningful learning opportunities for the next generation of teachers in BC.”
Rae-Anne Guenther, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University