Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education

School Highlights

In 1998, the “Education Department” of Bellarmine College was dedicated as a “School of Education” with Dr. Doris Tegart as its founding dean. The School of Education was named the Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education (AFTSE) on October 31, 2001, after adding a Master of Arts in Education program and a Master of Arts in Teaching program. The AFTSE is one of six (6) schools within the university, including the College of Arts and Sciences, and has the primary authority and responsibility for delivering and operating all initial and advanced professional education programs. The university acknowledges that the preparation of educators is a shared responsibility among all schools, as appropriate, with the College of Arts and Sciences as the primary collaborative partner in teacher training. The AFTSE currently offers 20 programs in educator preparation, including a doctoral program in Education and Social Change as of Summer, 2011.

The AFTSE continues its mission of preparing caring, effective educators in the Catholic liberal arts tradition of Bellarmine University to teach and lead in diverse settings. This mission is further illuminated by the theme of the AFTSE, Educator as Reflective Learner, is the outgrowth of more than ten years of reading, discussing, and reflecting on the philosophy of the unit and its conceptual framework. The AFTSE reaffirmed this theme (May, 2011) based on its recognized consistency with the mission of the institution and with the philosophy of the education faculty and community partners, as well as with the various programs for candidates. The theme, based on Linda Valli’s (1997) five types of reflection (technical, reflection in-and-on action, personalistic, deliberative, and critical) captures the essence of the conceptual framework in that effective educators are called to reflect consistently and systematically on their own practice, as well as mentor and collaborate with their colleagues in reflective practice, in order to advance successful professional learning communities within schools and the broader community.

Education Job Postings

To see current postings that have been sent to AFTSE, please visit our job postings page and log in using your Bellarmine email and password.

Events and Awards

Education student serves on STEM Panel

Current doctoral student, Richard Cox, and MAT alum, Patrick Burton, served on a STEM expert panel at the Kentucky Science Center.

Education student success abroad

Nina Wehner is one of our undergraduate students in Sweden. The local newspaper did a story cvoered how excited the kids are about working with a Bellarmine student. Wehner is doing wonderful and the teachers are so pleased with her. We are proud of our ambitious student. Read the article in Swedish.

Making a Difference

Bellarmine MAT grad James Wampler is the “Making a Difference” story in the September Vision magazine KET.

A Little Fun in the Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education

Watch the Schoolettes sing at the Wedding shower for Lauren Wagner, one of our SOE Administrative Assistants.

The STEAM Project at Bellarmine University

Watch WAVE 3's coverage of STEAM at Bellarmine.

Bellarmine Professor to Lead JCPS Literacy Initiative

The Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education faculty are pleased to announce that Dr. Theresa Magpuri-Lavell, Associate Professor of Literacy Education, has been named the first-ever "Bellarmine University Scholar-In-Residence” by Jefferson County Public Schools for the 2016 -2017 school year.

In this special role, Professor Magpuri-Lavell will work directly with Superintendent Donna Hargens and other JCPS colleagues implementing Year 3 of the BU-JCPS Literacy Project. This project will involve approximately 60 JCPS elementary schools having the greatest number of children at risk of reading failure, and the 500+ teachers and principals who serve them. As a result of this project, up to 12,000 children will benefit from evidence-based literacy instruction in grades K-3 during 2016-2017 and beyond. This is in addition to the 16,000 children who have already benefited in Years 1 and 2 of the project under the leadership of Professor Magpuri-Lavell, Dr. Karen Branham (JCPS) and their collective team.

Please join us in congratulating Theresa on this new and exciting appointment, and in wishing her all the best in this incredible outreach effort that speaks to our new QEP and social justice mission!

-- Robert Cooter, Dean

Advisory Committee for Education (ACE)

On April 21, the Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education conducted its spring Advisory Committee for Education (ACE) meeting. This was the School’s annual spring meeting and focused on issues of diversity. Following an outstanding panel presentation, the ACE members discussed ways to bring more diversity to the teacher education program. From left to right, members of the panel were: Dr. Aimee Green, Director of Recruitment and Staffing with Jefferson County Public Schools, Tayler Wright, a recent graduate of Bellarmine and teacher in the Woodford County Public Schools, Tamekka Cornelius, Director, Office of Multicultural Affairs at Bellarmine University, and Dr. Diane Calhoun-French, Provost of the Jefferson Community and Technical College.

Dr. Elizabeth Dinkins presents at the Oldham County Schools Laureate Ceremony

On Wednesday, April 27 Dean Cooter and faculty members attended the Oldham County Schools Reading Academy Laureate Ceremony to celebrate the accomplishments of the class of 2016. The partnership between Bellarmine University and Oldham County Schools is now in its 5th year of training teachers at all grades levels. We began with a Reading Academy that trained K-3 teachers and expanded the training in 2014 to include 4th-8th grade level teachers. In 2015 high school teachers were added to the training.

In collaboration with OCS instructional leaders, Dr. Elizabeth Dinkins has led the Disciplinary Literacy Academy for high school teachers and the Reading Academy for grades 4-8th teachers. We are so thankful to the OCS Superintendent, the Board of Education, and the instructional leadership team led by Amy Cordrey for this 5 year partnership that has provided training about 200 teacher and provided highly effective reading instruction for so many children.

STEAM Maker Faire was Successful!

Our April 30th culminating event of the STEAM Maker Faire was a raging success with approximately 200 attendees and 9 student projects showcased. Each station at the Maker Faire was operated by teachers and their students, and our partners (Kentucky Science Center, Speed Art Museum, and the Kentucky Center for the Performing Art) also conducted hands-on maker stations.

Classroom Connection | Pushing past assumptions

Jessica Dueñas Erickson is an eighth-year special education teacher at Oldham County Middle School. She previously taught in New York City Public Schools and Jefferson County Schools before moving to Oldham County Schools. She attends Bellarmine University and is slated to receive her educational specialist degree in instructional leadership this July. Classroom Connection seeks submissions from area educators.

You can read more at Classroom Connection | Pushing past assumptions

2016 KCTE College Teacher of the Year Award

Dr. Dottie Willis was honored as the 2016 College Teacher of the Year by the Kentucky Council Teachers of English (KCTE) on February 25 in Lexington, Kentucky. Dr. Willis, an associate professor at Bellarmine University for the past eight years, was recognized for her lifelong service as a role model and mentor to English Language Arts teachers. Before her work as a teacher of teachers at the college level, Dr. Dottie Willis taught both middle and high school English in the Jefferson County Public Schools, where she was also recognized as the 1992 Secondary Teacher of the Year. As Writing Specialist for the Jefferson County Public Schools from 2002-2007, Dr. Willis created and piloted NPR’s High School This I Believe curriculum, writing lessons that thousands of teachers throughout the nation and abroad have successfully implemented in their classrooms. Dr. Robert Cooter, Dean of the Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education, when announcing her award as 2016 KCTE College Teacher of the Year, described the teaching of Dottie Willis both in JCPS and at Bellarmine University as “the stuff of legend.”

Benjamin Self (current MAT – Alternative Certification student) has received kudos from JCPS.

As noted in the JCPS Monday Memo:

Kudos to Academy @ Shawnee teachers Beth Holladay, Ben Self, and Michael Sturgeon. The three led their students to compete in the 2016 Kentucky Space Sci-fi Project, and Shawnee students were honored with a first-place prize for video and an honorable mention. The Warped World transports an unsuspecting student to an alternate universe where he discovers that his friends are all suffering from mind control. This video wowed the judges with its stark black-and-white sequence and some imaginative camera work. Jaguar II tells the story of a failed space launch and the valiant efforts of the new crew, chosen to make a second attempt. The brave crew of the Jaguar II and a team of top cyber detectives scramble to find an evil programmer before he crashes their new spacecraft. Jaguar II was recognized for its overall quality and storyline. The two Shawnee teams will share more than $400 worth of iTunes gift cards for their videos. Each seven- to ten-minute video was graded on creativity, production quality, how much the piece caused the audience to think, and overall awesomeness. The two movies, The Warped World and Jaguar II can be viewed here. The Kentucky Space Sci-fi Project is sponsored by DATASEAM. Middle and high school students are invited to create a movie, original piece of art, or written piece of science fiction.

Joe Patzelt presents at ACPA Conference

Our very own Joe Patzelt, student-athlete and future middle school MATH teacher, recently traveled to Montreal to present at the ACPA conference.

Click here for information about this conference as well as the great response received from his presentation.

Dr. Sarah Bush, Associate Professor of Mathematics Education and Assistant Dean for Assessment and Accreditation, is proud to be his advisor.

Bellarmine helps get students in poverty reading on grade level

From WLKY, Louisville, KY. – Bellarmine University is calling it an educational breakthrough with possible national implications.

The school partnered with JCPS to get students in poverty reading on grade level.

Just a few months ago, 6-year-old Diamond struggled with completing words.

Diamond is one of several Jacob Elementary students who have made progress under the new Bellarmine literacy project designed to get all students reading on grade level by third grade... (Read full article here)

Bellarmine School of Education Graduate Wins the WHAS-TV ExCel Award

Dr. Kristin Cook

IMG_2395 is an Associate Professor of Science Education and the Chair of Undergraduate Programs. She received her doctoral degree at Indiana University- Bloomington in Curriculum & Instruction specializing in Science Education and Environmental Sciences. A former high school biology teacher, Kristin has served as a professional developer and consultant for elementary, middle, and high school STE(A)M-focused school reform and project and problem-based learning development. Kristin’s research focuses on engaging students and pre-service teachers with the community of science through the exploration of socio-scientific inquiry and integrated STEAM instruction. She has authored several manuscripts and book chapters, most notably including “Connecting to our community: Utilizing photovoice as a pedagogical tool to connect college students to science” featured in the International Journal of Environmental and Science Education, which won the Innovations in Teaching Science Teachers Award at the Association for Science Teacher Educators. She was also named an Ambassador for Science Literacy by the Kentucky Science Center. At Bellarmine University, she currently teaches Elementary, Middle, and Secondary Science Methods, as well as School Health, Nutrition, and Physical Education.