Through dynamic learner-centered programs that support lifelong study, our department faculty members prepare undergraduate and graduate candidates to meet the teaching demands of a culturally diverse 21st century society. Candidates use our resources ranging from the award-winning Early Childhood Laboratory and SFA Charter School to master the pedagogy and technology needed to develop classrooms appropriate for prekindergarten through 12th grade students.
Providing early intervention
Dr. Kathy Sheriff, associate professor in special education, accepted a position on the Board of Directors for The Helping House in Nacogdoches. The Helping House provides early intervention services to local children with a diagnosis on the autism spectrum and other sensory and development delays.
Dr. Kathy Sheriff
Pursuing her dreams
Inspired by the passion and dedication of her own high school teachers, recent secondary education graduate Katie Peterson was awarded the Ann Rogers Scholarship from the Texas Social Studies Supervisors Association during her final semester at SFA. Peterson said the award, which she received while student teaching 11th grade U.S. history at Cy-Fair High School, meant everything to her and was an “immense help in pursuing my lifelong dream of becoming an educator.”
Helping students learn and teach math
Dr. Mark Montgomery has combined versatile passions into a career filled with educational enthusiasm. His work to create a positive space for SFA students to learn both mathematics and effective ways to teach the subject to elementary and middle-level students earned him a 2019 Teaching Excellence Award.
Dr. Mark Montgomery, 2019 Teaching Excellence Award recipient
Bringing the nation to Nacogdoches
Dr. Heather Olson Beal, professor of secondary education, is a trailblazer in SFA’s Perkins College of Education. She’s brought national programs to our East Texas campus, such as the Barrio Writers creative expression summer program, and she has helped craft many meaningful connections between SFA teacher candidates and area schoolchildren.
Dr. Heather Olson Beal
Coming full circle as ECHL director
Lifelong resident of Nacogdoches Crystal Adams took the helm of the Early Childhood Laboratory this summer, serving as its director after spending the past 11 years employed with Nacogdoches Independent School District as a teacher, counselor and assistant principal in middle and elementary schools. She said she is looking forward to getting to know the children and learning more about them and their families. Her new role at the ECHL allows her to connect with not only children attending the ECHL but also SFA education students who are training to be tomorrow’s educators.
Crystal Adams, Director of the SFA Early Childhood Laboratory
American Foundation for the Blind honors SFA’s Dr. Shannon Darst
A career’s worth of experience teaching the blind and visually impaired – and preparing other teachers to do the same – was recognized at a national level for Dr. Shannon Darst, assistant professor of education studies.
Darst, along with two cocreators, received the Corinne Kirchner Research Award from the American Foundation for the Blind for a learning tool called the Visual Impairment Scale of Service Intensity of Texas, or VISSIT, which identifies the level of instruction a blind student needs in order to succeed.
Dr. Shannon Darst
Meet Our Students
“The university has helped prepare me to become a teacher in so many different ways. Starting with observing classrooms and moving into teaching the students myself, I’ve had the chance to grow as both a teacher and a learner. This type of hands-on learning has helped prepare me to be confident in my own classroom one day.”
“SFA provides hands-on experience with children during your first semester, and you learn so much from the very beginning! Each semester builds on the other, so you never miss a beat. The professors offer so much wisdom that allows you to feel like a natural when teaching. I’m very appreciative of SFA’s education program and all it has done to help prepare me for my future classroom!”
“The SFA middle-level grades education program provided me with real-world experiences in the classroom and the opportunity to work with actual educators. I feel prepared for my career because I’ve learned the best strategies to use with middle-level-grade students.”
want to contact the department of education studies?
COME SEE US
Janice A. Pattillo Early Childhood
2428 Raguet St.
PO Box 13017, SFA Station
Nacogdoches, TX 75962