News and Events

Curriculum and Instruction Receives 2017-2018 Biennium Bilingual Education Scholarship

Bilingual Education

The Department of Curriculum and Instruction, and Dr. Laura Chris Green, director of Bilingual/ESL program at Texas A&M University-Commerce have been awarded a one-time appropriation of $107,142 from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for the 2017-2018 academic year.

These funds were awarded after the 84th Texas Legislature passed House Bill 1, Article III, Section 45 to ensure over $2 million to support educator preparation programs at 7 North Texas universities including A&M-Commerce. The overarching goal of these funds is to encourage students to pursue teacher certification in high critical need areas such as bilingual education, ESL, and Spanish. To qualify for this scholarship, A&M-Commerce students must be admitted to an EC-6 Bilingual Generalist or 8-12 Spanish teacher educator program, demonstrate financial need, and maintain a cumulative 3.0 GPA.

Dr. Jennifer Dyer Senette, Ad Interim Department Head for Curriculum and Instruction noted, “Due to the generosity of the Texas Legislature and the leadership of Dr. Laura Chris Green, our department will be able to continue to recruit and graduate high quality bilingual and ESL educators. This funding will support our students and help them achieve their goals.”

Dr. Laura Chris Green, director of the Bilingual and ESL teacher education programs in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, has had a successful history of securing state and federal funds to recruit, retain and graduate highly qualified bilingual teachers.  She stated, “Thanks to previous grants from the Texas Legislature and from the US Department of Education, nearly $1,000,000 has been awarded to in-service and pre-service teachers pursuing bilingual and ESL credentials over the course of the last five years. Thanks to this new state grant, future bilingual teachers and future secondary Spanish teachers will also continue to receive some financial aid. We appreciate the support of the Spanish professors in the Department of Literature and Languages as well as the faculty in Curriculum & Instruction who provide our undergraduate students with excellent Spanish instruction and knowledge of how to best teach culturally and linguistically diverse students in our Texas public schools.”


College of Education & Human Services Assistant Professor Named TCPEA’s 2017 Educator of the Year


Dr. Nathan R. Templeton, Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership, has been named 2017’s Educator of the Year by the Texas Council of Professors of Educational Administration (TCPEA).

Dr. Templeton has served as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership since 2012. Before working at Texas A&M University Commerce, Dr. Templeton taught in Texas public schools for 12 years as a band director, fine arts administrator and campus principal. “I am truly honored to be the recipient of the 2017 Texas Council of Professors of Educational Administration Educator of the Year Award,” Dr. Templeton said. “For me, teaching is a passion and a calling. To be valued by one's peers in recognition of the influence on practitioner leadership development is a special honor and one that I will forever cherish.”

The Texas Council of Professors of Educational Administration is dedicated to promoting the improvement and advancement of educational leadership through yearly conventions and conferences, fostering relationships between educators and educational organizations and encouraging research. The organization’s Educator of the Year Award was established in order to recognize outstanding instructors in the field of educational leadership in Texas. Recipients must be active members of the TCPEA.

Dr. Humphreys, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs, said of the award, “Dr. Templeton is one of our finest educators. His passion for teaching inspires students to keep learning in spite of any social barricades that may exist in their lives. Among his colleagues, he is considered one of the most respected researchers in his field. Texas A&M University-Commerce is fortunate to have Dr. Templeton as a faculty member who mentors others. He serves as a role model to junior faculty as well as students interested in Educational Administration.”


Congratulations, Candice Lawrence, 2017 Tech Titans of the Future High School Level Nominee

Tech Titans 2017

The Tech Titans of the Future High School Level award recognizes a DFW Metroplex high school (grades 9-12) math or science teacher for development and implementation of an innovative teaching technique or program that inspires student interest regarding further educational and/or career pursuits in science, technology, engineering or math.

Within Ms. Lawrence's STEM class curriculum, each unit is based upon a different career option for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The course is designed as a project based learning environment that enables students to explore all industry careers in STEM. Students are required to explore and research all aspects of the project, design the project outcomes based upon customer needs, and act as a STEM professional throughout the entire project. Students learn the importance of communication and collaboration skills, and polish all soft skills required for a career.  The unit projects are design based upon a rubric grading criteria, they are not cookie cutter, and the students are free to develop and create a solution for real world scenarios relevant to professionals in STEM careers. Students learn to research, design, test, redesign, and retest for validity and functionality of the products while raising awareness of cost, efficiency, and quality of the products.

Ms. Lawrence has a passion for teaching science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and her enthusiasm is contagious to her students, their families, and the community. She holds a Bachelors of Science, Masters of Arts in Adult Education, Masters of Arts in Education Leadership with Principal Certification, and is pursuing her Doctorate of Educational Leadership with Superintendent Certification from Texas A&M University-Commerce. Ms. Lawrence was named 2016-2017 Teacher of the Year for Wylie High School, as elected by the student body. She was named 2016-2017 SkillsUSA District 5 Advisor of the Year, earning the National Statesman Award and recognized in Washington, D.C. She is the lead STEM/Engineering teacher in Wylie Independent School District in charge of researching and developing curriculum for all secondary levels.  Ms. Lawrence is also a certified instructor for the dual enrollment program, Engineer Your World, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) curriculum developed by University of Texas at Austin. Ms. Lawrence’s students at Wylie High School have the highest number of students throughout the nation successfully completing this program earning college credit.