TEACHER EDUCATION PIONEER LAUNCHES NONPROFIT TO ADVANCE INNOVATIONS IN TEACHER PREPARATION AND CERTIFICATION AROUND THE WORLD
Emily Feistritzer forms Future Teaching Institute to create a global teaching license. Charlotte Danielson, Robert Floden, David Imig, and Yong Zhao join board
Washington, DC (February 2, 2022) - Dr. Emily Feistritzer today announced the launch of Future Teaching Institute (FTI), a research and policy organization with the mission of creating a global teaching license to validate competence to teach in an ever-changing learning world. Dr. Feistritzer will use the proceeds from the recent acquisition of her company TeachNow, Inc. (dba Moreland University) to support the nonprofit.
“Today’s announcement is another chapter in my lifelong journey of empowering tomorrow’s teachers for tomorrow’s students in tomorrow’s learning world,” said Dr. Feistritzer. “No one is doing the work to address the fact that teachers all over the world seek to be recognized for their competence to teach and so few avenues are available for teacher licensure. Meanwhile, Covid has introduced online learning to the world and accelerated a path towards innovation.”
FTI has brought together many of the world’s leading experts in the field of teacher preparation and certification, who have the experience and know-how to develop a global teacher’s license. They include:
Charlotte Danielson: Author of the renowned book The Framework for Teaching.
Robert Floden: Dean Emeritus of Michigan State University’s College of Education.
David Imig: Senior fellow at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and former President and CEO of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education.
Yong Zhao: Foundation Distinguished Professor in the School of Education at the University of Kansas.
“Emily is a passionate leader and forward thinker with a decades-long track record of advancing the teaching profession,”said Charlotte Danielson. “I cherish the conversations I have with Emily because she has had extraordinarily ambitious ideas and found a way to will them into existence. I’m energized by the prospect of working with Emily and an extraordinary group of advisory board members to make a global impact on the teaching profession."
FTI’s first major project will be a large-scale landscape analysis to understand exactly how teachers enter the profession in the 197 countries that offer public education.
Today, there are 94 million teachers educating the world’s children, but to ensure all students have access to primary and secondary public education by 2030, UNESCO estimates that 69 million more teachers need to be hired. But the patchwork of pathways to becoming a teacher varies significantly across the globe and is too often lacking in any meaningful preparation.
Dr. Feistritzer has served as a national leader in the teacher preparation and certification field for over 50 years. She most recently served as the founder of Moreland University/TEACH-NOW, one of the nation’s largest technology-centric teacher preparation programs and degree-granting institutions. Since its founding in 2011, the institution has enrolled nearly 10,000 aspiring teachers in more than 150 countries, more than half of whom live outside the United States. TeachNow, Inc. was recently acquired by the Colibri Group.
A former nun and high school science and math teacher, Dr. Feistritzer gained national acclaim in 1979 as the founder of the National Center for Education Information, which published 48 reports on education, most focused on teacher preparation and certification.
Her work has been covered by newspapers and periodicals across the country, including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, Business Week, Time, Newsweek and U.S. and News World Report. She has received numerous awards throughout her career. In 2019, she was named Inc. Magazine’s “Top Ten Groundbreakers” in its Female Founders 100 List and Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business.”
Emily Feistritzer, who was a Catholic nun in her youth, later became a teacher. In 2011, she created TEACH-NOW, a company that trains and certifies teachers around the world. It is now a multimillion-dollar business.William Brangham returns, having caught up with Feistritzer in her Washington, D.C., home.
For creating a program that allows military veterans to become certified teachers, Teach-Now founder and CEO Emily Feistritzer is one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People of 2019.
The former nun was in what was then Riggs Bank on 14th and F Street one Friday afternoon, begging the loan officer for $20,000 that she swore she would pay back in three months or, as she gestured with a grand wave, “I will work 14th Street.”
"I have found that when teachers start using the internet as a primary resource, it changes the way that they teach not just online, but in their classrooms. They find resources that they didn’t know existed, from engaging yoga lessons for 5-year-olds to tours of Machu Picchu that are so realistic that a child feels like she is standing in the Peruvian mountains. It shouldn’t take a worldwide pandemic to teach our instructors to integrate rich educational content into remote instruction."
Emily Feistritzer, a 78-year-old former nun, learned as far back as the 1970s that she didn’t like traditional teaching methods, like talking at students as if she were the expert, and organizing learning around planned lessons. A more collaborative approach, she came to believe, was far better. She founded two education foundations that sought to conduct and distribute the most up-to-date research in the field, and, in 2011, she founded Teach-Now, which trains and certifies teachers online.