Transformational Partnerships and Learning: Broadening the experiences for a community organization, school and university
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Partnerships between community organizations, schools and universities are becoming more widespread as education faculties seek to broaden the experiences of their pre-service teachers (Kruger, Davies, Eckersley, Newell & Cherednichenko, 2009). The following paper reports on one such endeavor where a small group of six pre-service teachers, drawn from teaching programs that included secondary, primary and primary/early childhood, were immersed in a primary/secondary rural school in Sola, on the remote island of Vanua Lava, located in the northern province of Vanuatu. While international practicums are not new, what is unique within this endeavor was the nature of the partnership that included the Vanuatu Ministry of Education, the Australian Catholic University (ACU) and Rotary Australia World Community Service (RAWCS). Each partner had a layer of active participants represented by Arep Secondary School, the Faculty of Education (ACU, NSW) and the Rotary Club of Winston Hills. The partnership was able to provide both strategic and practical support to the ongoing project, creating layers of engagement and participation for the various groups. This partnership was collaborative as it was based upon genuine engagement with a focus on common goals and mutual benefits. It was built on relationships established over many years, which is different from other types of partnerships that often seek to obtain only individual organizational goals rather than shared purposes (Brown, Reed, Bates, Knaggs, McNight-Casey & Barnes, 2006).
Partnerships: A Journal of Service-Learning & Civic Engagement
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Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators