and 1972, University High School was a school that prided itself on being
at the cutting edge of education. Now, the U-High IDEA Scholarship awards
student teachers who show the same dedication to innovative and creative
teaching that was evident at University High school throughout its history.
from the Social Studies Chair
One of the
things that intrigued me about U-High was the makeup of the school. Students
came from Iowa City and surrounding rural towns; we wanted diversity.
In any given year, the captain of the football team would be the son of
a professor, and the next it would be the son of a farmer. Recognition
was given on the basis of ability, not pedigree.
department chair had a faculty appointment at the University
of Iowa and also taught many of the creative and original
classes at U-High. However, the UI graduate students who served
as the core faculty were the school’s real strength.
Not only did they keep new blood coming in, but they also
were important young role models who valued academic performance
and loved the subjects they majored in and taught.
really an innovator in teaching techniques. Early on, I taught junior
high social studies, and I got together with the head of the science department
to develop a course that taught seventh graders science and social studies
simultaneously, and planned a variety of field trips to illustrate the
points we were trying to make. We visited a coal mine in southwest Iowa
and while the science teacher explained how coal is made, I taught the
students about the sociology of company towns and the people who lived
in them. We didn’t call it “team teaching” back then,
but it really was a precursor to a teaching method that is commonly used
at least one class reunion is held, and the classes generally compile
booklets describing the classmates’ current activities. When you
read them, they confirm in a way that nothing else could that the experiences
they had at U-High contributed to what they achieved in life.
from the School Counselor
When I joined
the U of I faculty in 1964, I had a joint appointment with the College
of Education’s Counselor Education program and served as the first
and only head of U-High’s guidance program. U-High was an exciting
place to develop a model school guidance program, as the entire school
was known as being on the cutting edge.
remarkable aspect about the school was the students. There was such a
large number of academically gifted and high-achieving students, we did
not report class rank. When transcripts were sent out, we included a letter
describing the unique student body’s abilities with Iowa Tests scores
in the upper 90th percentile and the strong curriculum they had experienced.
Our students were accepted at the most prestigious colleges and universities
in the country.
at U-High were also an exceptionally talented group. Many also held joint
faculty appointments in the College of Education, including such distinguished
professors as Camille LeVois (Foreign Language), John Haefner (Social
Studies), Robert Carlsen (English), Gary Hansen (Physical Education),
Robert Yager (Science), and Vernon Price (Math).
Tremendous resources were available, such as the studio-quality video
equipment housed in the guidance suite. My opportunity to develop guidance-related
activities utilizing this technology would go on to have an impact on
the future of educational supervision and training practices in the field.
guidance programs for grades 9-12 to help students make decisions regarding
their careers and further education after high school, I recognized the
need to extend our program to the junior high and elementary school students.
We were one of the first schools to describe this difference and add a
guidance programs designed specifically for these age groups. It was then
that I felt we had a complete model school guidance program. It was one
that was visited by counselor education faculty and practicioners from
throughout the state and around the region.
experienced U-High’s magic will never forget what a
wonderful school it was. I know I will always treasure my
memories of those I worked with and assisted there.
Scholarship Rewards Outstanding Student Teachers
enable The University of Iowa College of Education’s outstanding
students to pay their U-bills, reduce their debt loads, and spend more
time learning to be educators. But long after the checks are cashed, scholarship
recipients reap the less tangible—but equally important—benefits
of being recognized for their achievements.
who received the U-High Innovative Development in Education Award (IDEA)—funded
by donations from alumni and faculty of the University of Iowa’s
lab school that operated from 1916 to 1972 and which rewards students
for outstanding student teaching—when they were students have looked
back and found that this “vote of confidence” early in their
teaching careers enabled them to start their first teaching jobs with
knowledge that they truly were good at teaching.
“The recognition was simultaneously flattering, inspiring and reassuring,”
said Vicki Krajewski (BA ’94, MAT ’99), who received the U-High
scholarship in 1999. “The art and skill of teaching is so subjective
that it’s hard to know when you’re doing things ‘right.’”
currently on sabbatical from a full-time English teaching
position at Kennedy High School in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, has
taught speech and composition courses at Hamilton College
in Cedar Rapids and uses her instruction skills creating training
materials for telecommunications company McLeodUSA. Though
her current professional pursuits have her outside of a traditional
classroom, she said that her student teaching experience—what
earned her the U-High scholarship—continues to serve
to quantify or succinctly summarize what I got out of student teaching
is like trying to explain what I’ve learned from living,”
she said. “Most importantly, I learned I could actually teach. It’s
so mysterious and intimidating before you get yourself in front of students.
You go into student teaching hopefully prepared with a lot of theory and
information about your subject matter, and a lot of thought about how
to plan and structure lessons. But on the other end of your equation are
200 adolescents, each with unique hopes, loves, flaws, defenses, insecurities,
and occasional crises. Because every person is an individual, there is
never one answer to any pedagogical question or classroom issue.”
Dutmers (BA ’00) did his student teaching in Mary Maxson’s
class at West Liberty (Iowa) High School and while he describes
that experience as “truly outstanding and innovative,”
receiving the U-High award as recognition of his teaching
abilities was icing on the cake.
award gave me an even greater sense of dedication to the profession, and
it showed the UI’s dedication to improving teacher education and
student learning,” said Dutmers, who teaches Spanish and is a marching
band assistant/percussion instructor at Lyons Township High School in
LaGrange, Ill. His enthusiasm for his chosen profession has only increased
find teaching to be very challenging, yet extremely rewarding,”
he said. “Teaching is an art in the sense that no teacher instructs
in exactly the same way, no classroom is identical on any given day, and
no two students will always interpret a lesson in the same manner. The
profession is truly unique, requiring both the creativity of a sculptor
and the patience of a fisherman.”
Dutmers joined with hundreds of other UI College of Education alumni and
made a gift to the Education Advancement Fund, which supports UI students
in a variety of ways, as they become the next generation of educators,
administrators and leaders. He is one of many scholarship recipients to
become scholarship supporters.
is essential to give back to those that provided opportunities
for you, so that they may also provide opportunities for others,”
he said. –by Anne Heilemann