Edited by Michael Pressley
The Alliance for Catholic Education, referred to most commonly by its acronym ACE, is one of the best known and widely respected programs at the University of Notre Dame. The rock band U2 praised it during a concert at Notre Dame, the President of the United States acknowledged it in a valedictory address, and each year hundreds of students compete for admission. Established in 1994 by Fr. Timothy Scully, C.S.C., and Fr. Sean McGraw, C.S.C., ACE places more than 150 college graduates in over one hundred parochial schools throughout the United States. The overarching purpose of ACE is to improve Catholic schools, especially in underprivileged areas of the U.S., by enabling exceptionally talented students to teach in them. ACE, in turn, offers students two years of meaningful service and a graduate degree from Notre Dame.
In Teaching Service and Alternative Teacher Education: Notre Dame’s Alliance for Catholic Education, Michael Pressley and his fellow contributors provide the history of ACE. They also offer a blueprint for other educational institutions interested in implementing a similar program. Covering the fundamentals of starting and maintaining a program like ACE, Teaching Service and Alternative Teacher Education discusses motivation, planning, intellectual foundations, and community building. It also tackles practical issues such as financing the program, obtaining accreditation, and recruiting teachers.
“ Teaching Service and Alternative Teacher Education is highly significant to scholars and students in related disciplines. It reports on a program that is likely to be used as a model for similar programs for years to come. This volume will be an important resource for anyone who is interested in alternative teacher education. Readers cannot fail to be impressed by the ACE program—and they will learn a lot about the design and development of quality alternative teacher education.” —Joanna Williams, Teachers College, Columbia University
“ACE is an innovative program and has a worthy story to tell. Teaching Service and Alternative Teacher Education makes a solid contribution to the fields of Catholic education and teacher education reform. It will be significant for educators interested in innovative approaches to the design of teacher preparation experiences.” —Jennifer Whitcomb, University of Denver
“Philanthropists interested in models for strengthening teacher training will find much to benefit them in this book.” —Philanthropist, September/October 2002
“Pressley effectively describes the history of ACE and the philosophical underpinnings of the program, including emphases on professional education, community, and spirituality. Pressley provides a very good understanding of these philosophical bases.” —Choice, January 2003