Community Engagement
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Initiatives: School of Education

The Whitworth School of Education provides multiple opportunities for pre-service teaching candidates to engage the community in a variety of settings. These experiences are designed to prepare the candidates for their professional life in classrooms and to deepen their sense of calling to serve their students and families. Through effective instructional practices, attention to relationships with their students and families, and ongoing engagement with their communities, our graduates are committed to closing the achievement gap and providing the academic foundation necessary for their students to succeed in their professions and careers.

Community Engagement Opportunities in the School of Education

  • Literacy Center:

    The Whitworth Literacy Center provides small-group and individualized academic instruction to elementary-aged students with learning problems.  A six-week long session runs each summer, and an after-school program runs for nine weeks each semester.


  • Family Book Nights:
    A collaborative effort between the Whitworth School of Education and Starbucks. Teaching candidates provide parents with strategies for promoting literacy in the home. Children are read to and provided with a free book and treats.

  • Homework Helpers and Holmes Elementary:
    Whitworth School of Education candidates provide after-school assistance and mentoring to students of Holmes Elementary. Holmes is located in West Central Spokane and has a high rate of poverty.

  • Host Family Project:
    Teacher candidates are invited into the homes of "host families" who have a severely disabled child. The purpose of this project is for the teacher candidates to develop a "parental perspective" on children and youth with disabilities.
  • Intercultural Immersion Field Experience:
    Teacher candidates spend an entire Jan Term in a school that has a culture different than their own. Candidates are placed in low-income and diverse settings in eastern Washington and in such locales as San Francisco and Sitka, Alaska.

  • Extended Placement Program:
    As juniors, the elementary candidates are placed in schools where they will spend three semesters of field experiences, culminating in student teaching. This extended placement allows candidates to gain a deeper understanding of the schools and communities they serve and of the issues that their schools and communities face.

  • AVID:
    Secondary candidates are working with several local area high schools tutoring students who have been identified as capable students but who are not working to standards.

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