Isaac Prilleltensky gears UM School of Education to add leaders working to get kids in poor families ready to learn
Isaac Prilleltensky, who heads the University of Miami's School of Education, hasn't always focused on the art of teaching. He spent much of his career dedicated to the mental health field.
His background is in psychology, and earning his doctorate took him on a whirlwind tour of the globe that started in Israel and culminated in Canada.
He worked as a school psychologist, but after a few years realized he could be more effective in preventing children's problems rather than trying to fix them.
His focus at the University of Miami is to ensure his students can teach future generations to find health in themselves, their immediate relationships and their work.
While the school of education's primary job is to turn out teachers, Mr. Prilleltensky said that it can't be the sole supply of educators for Miami-Dade public schools. Instead his "focus is to try to create a new generation of leaders who can work with families in poor communities so that when the kids come to school they are ready to learn," he said.
He's stretching the college's resources deep into the community, partnering with groups like the Children's Trust and the Early Learning Coalition to offer its research expertise to their daily work.
Mr. Prilleltensky discussed the school's work with the education and business community as well as its effort to develop new programs to meet education's ever-changing challenges on the University of Miami's Coral Gables campus with Miami Today reporter Zachary S. Fagenson.
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