Friday, May 22, 2015

McDowell Institute concludes successful 2014-2015

BU’s McDowell Institute for Teacher Excellence in Positive Behavior Support continued to provide professional development experiences emphasizing student support models during the 2014-2015 academic year. The institute focused on increasing awareness of bullying, child sexual abuse prevention and mental health issues.

A highlight of the spring semester was the McDowell Institute’s professional development experience for more than 150 student teachers. The program emphasized preventive classroom management, including the core foundations of building rapport, providing clear and explicit behavioral expectations and providing high-density, behavior-specific positive reinforcement for students as they acquire and demonstrate appropriate behavioral skills and meet performance expectations.

This fall, the McDowell Institute plans to increase mental health awareness by collaborating with student organizations to host events and activities in conjunction with the World Federation for Mental Health and their partnership with the National Alliance on Mental Illnesses. In addition, the McDowell Institute will convene a symposium for the BU community with an emphasis on students enrolled in the College of Education’s teacher preparatory programs. The symposium will highlight practical actions classroom teachers can take to create trauma-informed learning environments, as well as collaborative statewide initiatives to support trauma-informed educational approaches sponsored by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Office of Children’s Mental Health within the Department of Human Services.

The McDowell Institute’s Charlotte Kemper can provide more information on these events. If you are interested in attending, please contact Charlotte at 570-389-5124. You can learn more about the McDowell Institute and read our newsletter at

 — Angela Pang, Interim Director, McDowell Institute