Carl Grant was teaching middle school science in Chicago during the early 1960s when he first heard about Kappa Delta Pi (KDP), the international honor society in education.
“When I first started teaching a colleague mentioned joining KDP, and how a lot of teachers and teacher candidates were involved,” says Grant, who has gone on to enjoy a highly decorated career and today is the Hoefs-Bascom Professor of Education with UW-Madison’s No. 1-ranked Department of Curriculum and Instruction. “So I joined and that certificate is still proudly hanging in my study at home.”
Kappa Delta Pi offers its members numerous networking opportunities and provides a range of resources throughout the various stages of one’s career. Founded in 1911, the honor society today has 40,000 members at more than 625 active chapters at universities and colleges in the United States and across the globe.
And on May 4, UW-Madison’s School of Education will be establishing a new Kappa Delta Pi chapter during a luncheon ceremony at the Gordon Dining and Events Center. Membership in Kappa Delta Pi is comprised of university students in education, students seeking advanced degrees, professional educators, school administrators and education researchers.
“Kappa Delta Pi offers a wonderful opportunity for our talented students in teacher education and our top alumni to connect and develop relationships with other respected educators both here and across the world,” says UW-Madison’s Molly Carroll, who directs the Partner School Network and is leading the School of Education’s efforts to launch a local chapter. “KDP can help create a bridge for our students into the teaching profession and help them develop an ongoing professional community that connects our teacher educators past the end of their course of study at UW-Madison.”
A sampling of Kappa Delta Pi resources include:
• Quality publications that support the professional development of educators and scholars. Through its publications, KDP is committed to stimulating dialogue among educators, highlighting educational innovations and best practices, and encouraging positive educational change.
• A range of professional development supplies, including “Novice Notes” for new teachers, “Ideas to Go” for all teachers, and “ProPointers” for teachers who have been in the classroom for three years or more.
• Online classroom assets – including lesson plans on a range of topics and apps to use with students – that have all been vetted and recommended by KDP colleagues.
• Scholarships and grants that are available exclusively to KDP members.
“It’s wonderful all the resources KDP makes available for its members,” says Grant. “Teaching is a profession and KDP helps its members interact with colleagues across the nation and the world, and to grow professionally and increase their knowledge about teaching.”
Since becoming a member in the 1960s, Grant has kept close ties with KDP even as he left the K-12 classroom to pursue a career in academia. He especially likes KDP’s commitment in recent years to making sure all students have access to a high-quality education.
Grant has worked on the UW-Madison campus for more than four decades, focusing his efforts on examining ways to improve students’ achievement, while enriching their knowledge in multicultural social justice, culturally responsive curriculum development and teaching.
In 2013, Grant was invited to join KDP’s prestigious Honorary Laureate Chapter. This chapter was established in 1924 to recognize people who have made outstanding contributions to the development of professional education. John Dewey was the first nominee, and since then more than 250 eminent educators have been named to KDP’s Laureate Chapter including: Albert Einstein, Margaret Mead, Eleanor Roosevelt, Jean Piaget and George Washington Carver.
“You see names like Einstein and Carver and all these prominent people and you ask, ‘How did I get here?’ ” Grant said of being selected into the honorary chapter. “It’s a great honor.”
Membership to KDP’s Honorary Laureate Chapter is limited to 60 living scholars – and four current members call UW-Madison home, the most of any college or university.
Thomas Popkewitz was selected as a new member this past fall, while Michael Apple, Gloria Ladson-Billings and Grant were already members.
Apple is the John Bascom Professor of Curriculum and Instruction, and Educational Policy Studies. Ladson-Billings is the School of Education's Kellner Family Distinguished Chair in Urban Education and is a professor with the departments of Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Policy Studies, and Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis. And Popkewitz is a professor with the School’s Department of Curriculum and Instruction.
“Because the Laureate Chapter has four people from UW-Madison, I really felt that we should have a chapter here,” says Grant. “We have a dynamic teacher education program and starting a chapter and becoming a member just makes sense.”
To learn more about UW-Madison’s chapter of KDP, visit the group’s Facebook Page.
Or email Molly Carroll at: firstname.lastname@example.org