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Reinventing Teacher Education in Brazil: The Programa de Educacao de Docentes (PED)

For the past three years, the Lemann Center in collaboration with Canoa, a Lemann Foundation assisted institution in Sao Paulo, has begun an ambitious teacher education project, PED, based on Stanford-Canoa-Brazilian university-Brazilian municipality partnerships aimed at completely transforming teacher education in Brazil. The project has focused on especially on mathematics and has now added science teaching, both areas of great need. Currently, 16 universities in eight states have participated in the project—9 private, 4 public state, and 3 federal institutes. In 2019, more than 400 active teachers were being trained in Especialização courses across these universities and institutes.

The project has now entered a new phase, in two ways. First, PED is training a large group of already experienced teacher trainers drawn from partner universities. These trainers will form the core of those training professors of teacher education in an expanded base of public universities in future years. Thus, the locus of the PED project will shift increasingly to Brazil. Second, the project has also reached a new phase of large-scale evaluation of the impact of PED on the way PED-trained teachers actually have changed their classroom teaching.

In addition, as part of PED, the Lemann Center is expanding its innovative work in new forms of science curriculum and teaching in schools. Tatiana Hochgreb runs the advancement of science teaching in PED at Stanford. She is a Brazilian PhD in biology who brings a wealth of knowledge to the project in developing science curriculum and using it to improve science teaching in Brazilian schools. She is also working closely with Paulo Blikstein at Columbia University in this area of research and innovation. This assures that PED will continue to build a strong presence in improving science and mathematics teaching in Brazil during the next decade.