Community Partnerships

Community partnerships are essential to the success of Texas A&M University-San Antonio’s College of Education and Human Development.  Each year hundreds of graduates from the College of Education and Human Development accept positions as teachers, mental health professionals, physical education coaches, school counselors, principals, and superintendents.  The more prepared our graduates are for their careers, the better equipped they will be to positively impact the local community. 

On this page you will find a number of partnerships that our faculty have cultivated.  If you would like more information on any of these partnerships, or if you are interested in starting a new collaboration, please contact our College of Education and Human Development at (210) 784-2501 or by email at:

**Click a step to expand and receive more information.**

Reading Chohort with SAISD

The Reading Program, in the Department of Educator and Leadership, has partnered with San Antonio Independent School District (SAISD) to assist in developing 19 literacy leaders for SAISD.  Cohort teachers will complete 36 hours of rigorous literacy courses across two years.  The program of study includes courses such as, early and secondary literacy, literacy assessment, language arts, literacy research, models and theories in literacy, and dyslexia and reading differences.  In addition, cohort teachers will complete an action research project in which they will identify a problem on their campus or within their district and use research results to address the problem.  Moreover, cohort teachers will complete a schoolwide literacy leadership course in which they will learn how to be an instructional coach and a campus literacy leader. Finally, each cohort teacher will complete a 160 hour internship in literacy leadership.

 It is well-documented that students in the U.S. are not reading at a level of proficiency (National Center for Education Statistics, 2016) and one reason could be inadequate teachers’ knowledge of how to teach reading. It is the Reading Program’s mission to empower graduate students to be knowledgeable of the science of reading so that they may be able to teach all students to read. The Reading Program faculty feel that upon completing the program, each teacher will be able to make a significant positive impact on the students whom they teach and the teachers whom they may coach.

In Fall 2017, the Reading Program will begin a second cohort of 20 teachers with SAISD.  These teachers will follow the same program of study.

Reading Program And SAISD Reading Program and SAISD Reading Program and SAISD

Kinesiology Intership Sites

Students in the Kinesiology Program participate in an internship as a part of their preparation for physical therapy (PT) school, occupational therapy (OT) school, or entrance into the fitness industry. The Kinesiology Program is actively connected with PT, OT, as well as recreational and fitness centers in the local community. The internship coordinator and student work together to select a site, which will best fit that student’s needs and field of interest. Currently, there are 13 approved sites for exercise science and 12 approved sites for pre-PT students, and typically 15 students take internship each semester. Students participating in internship can expect to shadow the director of the facility and/or doctor of the clinic. They may also engage in hands-on learning such as measuring body composition, blood pressure, blood sugar, and client screening in a recreational and fitness center. Assessment of injury, treatment of injury such as heat and ice pack, and overseeing clients’ exercise protocol for physical therapy can be expected in a PT center. Specific objectives are also created to accomplish goals established by the internship supervisor. The capstone project of the internship is a portfolio indicative of learning and work accomplished at the site. The potential impact the internship has on students’ learning is that of a practical nature. In other words, students are now putting into practice what they learned in the classroom to prepare them for entrance into the industry or for continuing their education.

Community Partnership between Program of Bilingual/ESL & Communities in Schools -San Antonio

Dr. Hsiaoping Wu, Associate professor

Department of Educator and Leadership Development

Program of Bilingual Education/ESL 


Dr. Esther Garza, Associate Professor

Department of Educator and Leadership Development

Program of Bilingual Education/ESL 

About Communities in Schools – San Antonio (CIS-SA)

For over 30 years Communities in Schools of San Antonio has been helping students achieve in school, graduate and go on to bright futures. Our mission is to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.

The story of Communities in Schools began in the 1970s, when Founder Bill Milliken, then a youth advocate in New York City, came up with the idea of bringing community resources inside public schools – where they are accessible, coordinated and accountable. “It’s relationships, not programs, that change children,” Bill once said. “A great program simply creates the environment for healthy relationships to form between adults and children. Young people thrive when adults care about them on a one-to-one level, and when they also have a sense of belonging to a caring community.” Understanding the importance of Bill’s message, the Communities in Schools model was brought to San Antonio in 1985.

Today, Communities in Schools is the nation’s largest and most effective organization dedicated to keeping kids in school and helping them succeed in life. Our unique model positions site coordinators inside schools to assess students’ needs and provide resources to help them succeed in the classroom and in life. We partner with local businesses, social service agencies, health care providers and volunteers. Whether it’s food, school supplies, health care, counseling, academic assistance or a positive role model, Communities in Schools is there to help.

In the CIS 2016 annual report, this organization has achieved the following successes for students, families, and communities.

  • 1 of 164 affiliates to win community of excellence award after being nominated by Mayor Ivy Taylor.
  • 48,341 students benefitted from school wide-CIS-SA led initiatives
  • 4,3535 food packs distributed to students and families in need
  • 90% of CIS upward bound students were admitted to college and received $985,955 in scholarships, financial aid and grants
  • 1,632 sessions of one-on-one counseling provided by CIS clinical caseworkers
  • 29.3 tons of school supplies were collected during stuff the bus school supply drive
  • 8,068 students received comprehensive stay-in-school services
  • 99% stayed in school
  • 93% improved in academics behavior and/or attendance
  • 95% were prompted to the next grade
  • 96% graduate from high school

Partnership between Texas A&M University – San Antonio and CIS

In order to support students and communicates and continue the spirit of CIS,

Dr. Esther Garza and Dr. Hsiao-ping Wu from Department of Educator and Leadership Preparation, Program of Bilingual/ESL met with CIS Volunteer manager, Ilsa Garcia to discuss the partnership in 2015. The goal of this partnership is to support communities in San Antonio, and provide a field-based placement experience for A&M-SA future educators.

In the United States, there is a growing cultural diversity shift in ethnicity, language, and age. Future educators have to develop cultural and linguistic competence to work with English language learners. Firstly, they should have the capacity to value diversity, manage the dynamics of different in the classroom, acquire and institutionalize cultural knowledge, and adapt to the diversity of communities they will serve. Secondly, they have to have the knowledge of language and they are able to communicate effectively and convey information in a manner that is understood by students with diverse backgrounds.

However, developing these competences is not an easy journey and it requires the time to develop awareness, openness, and respect to appreciate all cultural differences.

Through the course of EDBL 3321 - Methods for Teaching non-English Speaking child in the program of bilingual and ESL, CIS assisted A&M-SA students to work with English Language Learners (ELLs) in elementary and middle-school levels in different school districts, (i.e. Harlandale, North East, Somerset, South San Antonio, Southwest). A&M-SA pre-service teacher will engage 10-weeks long tutoring with 1-2 ELLs individually during semester. This course aim is designed to help educational practitioners to understand the inter-relatedness of language and literacy learning in the classroom of Non-English speakers. During 10 visits, A&M-SA students have to conduct different sheltered mini-lessons and conduct assessment on listening, speaking, reading and writing.

Results & Award

The partnership with CIS since 2015 had brought positive impact on A&M-SA students. As a lead faculty of EDBL 3321, a study was conducted to assess the result of tutoring project with CIS. Data were collected from students’ tutoring journals, and findings showed that this partnership generated the following positive impacts. Pre-service teachers have been the value of tutoring approach and shifted their views to define ELLs. In their tutoring period, they have been able to contextualize instructional strategies and develop cultural awareness and sensitivity. In addition, pre-service teachers need to work with CIS staff, school site coordinators, and classroom teachers, and pre-service stated that they have to develop the professionalism to communicate with each other. (Source: Wu, H. (2016). The effectiveness of tutoring for improving pre-service teacher development. 6(3) Journal of Pedagogical Development, 6(3), 41-49). In 2017, the student, Jennifer Schipper under Ms. Pamela Massey’s supervision received the tutor of the year awarded by Communities in Schools – San Antonio.  


Again, as a faculty, I would like to thank you again for the partnering with Communities in Schools – San Antonio. The assistance and contribution from their organization make a positive impact on students at Texas A&M University – San Antonio. In the future, all faculty in the program of bilingual and ESL, Department of Educator and Leadership Preparation will continue the partnership to support A&M-SA students and communities.




Community Partnerships in Special Education

The EDSE Program faculty members at Texas A&M University-San Antonio prides themselves in providing robust, diverse, community-driven experiences for the teacher candidates with whom they work. Here are highlights of some partnerships.

TX-SELF is an initiative that Texas A&M-San Antonio faculty members envisioned in which EDSE and ED Leadership faculty members would work together to produce high-quality, exceptional leaders in special education. This unique partnership allows program members to attain a Master’s in Special Education and Principal certification in the same program. This cohort model focuses on action research, mentorship, and tangibles produced for use in the partnering school districts.

Southwest Intependent School District is the first district to partner fully with A&M-San Antonio in a cohort model. This cohort, inducted in summer 2017, will be the model program for implementation of TX-SELF. For more information on TX-SELF, please email us here.

disABILITYsa connects people with all types of disabilities and their families to information about local resources, programs, and opportunities that promote independence and inclusion where they live, work and play. The mission of disABILITYsa is to educate, advance, and engage individuals with disabilities by sharing information, creating opportunities, and strengthening organizations that serve them.

Our partnership with disABILITYsa offers teacher candidates opportunities to work with persons with different abilities at all levels. Students volunteer for AccessAbilty Fest, as researchers and interns, and with other possibilities.

Melanie Cawthon Exec Dir of disABILITYsa

Melanie Cawthon
Exec Dir of disABILITYsa

AccessABILITY Fest

AccessABILITY Fest 

A&M-SA Students at Celebration Day

A&M-SA Students at
Celebration Day

Fiesta Especial® is an official Fiesta® San Antonio experience created for children and adults with physical, cognitive and developmental differences and the family and friends who love them. Fiesta Especial® creates inclusive and educational experiences engaging individuals with disabilities in the culture, diversity, and celebrations of Fiesta® through community instruction and training. 

Our partnership with Fiesta Especial® has been diverse. Our program candidates have sponsored the Royal Coronation, assisted with leadership workshops for court members, sponsored court members, and served as the educational resource partners for Celebration Day, an official Fiesta Especial® event. 

Fiesta Especial Royal Court

Fiesta Especial Royal Court

Educator Preparation Program Community Partnerships

 1)      San Antonio Area Foundation after school tutorial at Stewart elementary:  Texas A&M University San Antonio was awarded the 2 year High School Completion Grant to partner with San Antonio ISD’s Stewart Elementary and Communities in School. This grant allows current A&M-SAjuniors and seniors in the educator preparation program to use a near-peer tutor approach that will impact 25 Stewart elementary students in grades 3-5 in high needs areas. A&M-SA students will be paired with Stewart students with the assistance of CIS based on at-risk status. This is a 2-year grant that will change the academic and social landscape at this campus by utilizing highly qualified tutors to implement best practices, differentiated instruction and developing lifelong strategies for Stewart’s students to become high school completers.

 2)      Paid teacher residency at Stewart elementary: SAISD’s Superintendent Pedro Martinez and Deputy Superintendent Mark Weber wanted to collaborate with A&M-SA to implement a one-year, paid teacher residency model at an IR campus. With the help of the TIPPS grant, we were able to support 9 clinical teachers to commit to one year, working closely with a mentor teacher and their students, to build a strong foundation of instruction and classroom management. Teacher residents are closely supervised by terminally degreed faculty that assist in connecting theory to practice, monitoring student progress, assessing and disaggregating data as well as providing necessary resources for the campus. Our goal is to build a strong instructional and management environment that will continue to grow as students become successful.

 3)      Initial certification sites: At Texas A&M University San Antonio, we are honored to be a guest in all 17 Bexar County school districts. Each year, we place roughly 850 students in classrooms from observations to clinical teaching. We are also building partnerships with surrounding districts as well to accommodate interest and growth within our university. The Educator Preparation Program Faculty are dedicated individuals who visit the districts, campuses and Principals to find out how we can make an impact in the community with our future teacher candidates. Each semester we make a commitment to all of our districts and in turn, they provide the best cooperating teacher and example of what the teaching field encompasses. Due to our positive rapport, districts hire many of our students both mid-year and end of year terms.



Field Practicum in Counseling EDCG 5356

Preparation to become Licensed Professional Counselors in Texas includes both a rigorous academic curriculum, and experiential training where students can practice their emerging counseling skills with actual clients.  Several community counseling sites in San Antonio and the surrounding area have agreed to provide opportunities for students to engage in supervised counseling interactions with clients. In return, the students enable the sites to provide services to more clients. The sites provide a range of services from working with children, adolescents, or adults. Depending on the site students choose, they have opportunities to develop counseling skills on topics such as grief, substance abuse, domestic violence, family dynamics, parenting, animal assisted therapy, college success, severe mental illness, depression and anxiety. Some students develop such strong supervisory relationships with their community site supervisors, that some sites hire them after graduation.

The number of sites where students can receive their supervised practice adjusts from semester to semester, based on the changing needs of the community counseling site and their availability, but there are about 20 sites that have regularly supervised counseling students for several years now.

Approved practicum sites include:

Alpha Home

Archdiocese of San Antonio

Baptist Child and Family Services

Bluebonnet Trails

Guardian Hours

Center for Refugee Services

Child Safe

Children’s Alliance Center of South Texas

Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas

Communities in Schools

Connections Individual and Family Services

Family Service of San Antonio

Palo Alto College

Presa Community Center

Roy Mass Youth Alternatives

Sage Social Services

Starlight Recovery Center

Texas A&M University Counseling Center

Transitional Care Clinic – University of Texas Health Science Center

University of the Incarnate Word Counseling Center

A&M-SA Preservice Teachers Participate in SAReads Tutor Corps

Literacy San Antonio is a 501 © (3) nonprofit organization which supports a local project, SAReads. In partnership with Texas A&M – San Antonio, SAReads provides a clinical experience to preservice teachers enrolled in literacy instruction courses at Texas A&M - SA. Preservice teachers participate in the SAReads Tutor Corps where they apply science-based reading instruction methods while tutoring students in kindergarten through 5th grade. SAReads empowers preservice teachers and classroom teachers to use reading assessment data to implement data-driven instruction (“DDI”) specific to each student learning to read.

The SAReads Tutor Corps provides reading instruction once a week to kindergarten through 5th grade students who are nominated by teachers or school administrators in Southwest Independent School District (SWISD). Tutors apply the theory to practice model as they take the theory they learn in their education/literacy course(s) to the students in SWISD.  Tutors use the five components of literacy instruction (phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension) to help students improve reading proficiency. Preservice teachers prepare custom lesson plans for each elementary-aged student based on reading assessment data (i.e., data-driven instruction). SAReads provides materials, instructional coaching and support to tutors so they learn to implement effective strategies and techniques that teach and motivate students to read. The preservice teachers gain a high quality clinical experience using science-based reading instruction and 15% of their course grade comes from participation in the SAReads Tutor Corps.

For more information about SAReads visit

Texas Public Radio Report: “Proven Method To Teach Reading Could Turn Around 3rd Grade Reading Assessments"


The Prefreshman Engineering Program-USA (PREP-USA)

The Prefreshman Engineering Program-USA (PREP-USA),under The UTSA Institute for P-20 Initiatives, is an academically rigorous mathematics-based summer enrichment program conducted at several college and university campuses in San Antonio, across the state of Texas and Nation. PREP-USA identifies middle and high school students who have an interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and helps prepare those students for success in advanced studies and careers by providing them with a challenging academic program that emphasizes the development of abstract reasoning and problem solving skills and exposure to careers through career awareness speakers and field trips.

The original Prefreshman Engineering Program (PREP) was started in 1979 by UTSA mathematics professor Dr. Manuel P. Berriozábal. Seven years later, PREP expanded throughout the state of Texas and became known as Texas PREP, or TexPREP for short. In 1997, thanks to a grant from NASA, TexPREP continued to grow and expand across the Nation and is now known simply as PREP-USA. Participation in PREP-USA is open to anyone, but PREP-USA particularly targets students who are from traditionally underrepresented groups in STEM, including minorities, females, and low income students. PREP-USA’s goal is to increase the number of competently prepared students who ultimately pursue postsecondary studies and careers in STEM by stressing the development of abstract reasoning and problem solving skills, as well as the application of this knowledge through coursework, team projects, class presentations, and examinations.

  • San Antonio TexPREP has components that are presented in a seven-week session each summer for grades 7th-10th grade. Classes are Monday-Thursday 8am-4pm. Students can choose Texas A&M San Antonio as the second of the four-year program sites. The curriculum components for year two are: problem solving, physics, and algebraic structures.  Field trips to Toyota and the Presidio Museum are also part of the curriculum. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) has approved one unit of elective credit toward high school credit for each summer of PREP successfully completed. Texas A & M San Antonio has hosted the program for the past six years.
  • Universities/colleges that participate in the San Antonio TexPREP Program are:

University of Texas San Antonio, Texas A & M San Antonio, St Mary’s University, Northeast Lakeview College, Northwest Vista College, Palo Alto College, St. Phillip College, San Antonio College.

  • School districts that participate are: Alamo Heights, Archdiocese of San Antonio, Bandera ISD, Boerne ISD, Comal ISD, Dilley ISD, East Central ISD, Edgewood ISD, Floresville ISD,

Fort Sam Houston ISD, Harlendale ISD, Judson ISD, Lackland ISD, Lytle ISD, Medina Valley ISD, Natalia ISD, New Braunfels ISD, North East ISD, Northside ISD, Pearsall ISD, Pleasanton ISD, Randolph ISD, San Antonio ISD, Schertz-Cibolo-Universal City ISD, Somerset ISD, South San ISD, Southside ISD, Southwest ISD, and students who are home schooled.


For additional information, you may contact:

San Antonio TexPREP office, 501 W. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.

San Antonio, Texas 78207-4415

Pamela Massey, Lecturer, Department of Educator and Leadership Development

Program of Bilingual Education/ESL

Texas A & M San Antonio TexPREP Director


Texas A &M University-San Antonio
School Counseling Practicum Sites

Nixon-Smiley ISD Wimberly ISD
Alamo Heights ISD Lackland ISD
Devine ISD Carrizo Springs ISD
Comfort SID Floresville ISD
Kenedy ISD Schertz-Cibolo ISD
Sequin ISD Jourdanton ISD
San Antonio ISD Northside ISD
Judson ISD Brooks Academy of Science & Engineering
Medina Valley ISD Harlandale ISD
Poteet ISD South San ISD
Edgewood ISD Southside ISD
Northeast ISD East Central ISD
Karnes City ISD Southwest ISD
Pearsall ISD Comal ISD



San Antonio Museum of Art

 The partnership between the San Antonio Museum of Art and Texas A&M University San Antonio is a two-way partnership where A&M San Antonio faculty offer their early childhood expertise to museum docents and the museum offers their museum space and art collection as a site for community-based learning.  Undergraduate students in the EDEC 3349: Academics, Creativity & Play course learn how to support learning and promote creativity by integrating art across content areas. University students can accompany local elementary classes as they tour the museum.  The following day the A&M San Antonio students visit the local elementary school to facilitate an integrated art lesson with the children as a way to extend the learning that began at the San Antonio Museum of Art. 

Graduate students studying early literacy develop literacy backpacks that can be used in the museum to encourage oral language in young visitors. They also engage in research on the way adults support oral language as they visit the museum with a younger child. Additional projects that will be implemented in the 2018 academic year include graduate students developing curriculum and resources for the infants and toddlers visiting the museum. 

San Antonio Museum of Art painting


Head Start Partnership

Texas A&M University San Antonio has collaborated with the City of San Antonio Head Start as they support the continuing education of their teachers.  Beginning in the summer of 2011, Texas A&M University has offered a Summer Institute where teachers can earn 9 credits of graduate coursework during each of two Summer Institute sessions.

This partnership ensures that teachers who work with young children have the knowledge and skills necessary for working with our youngest learners and it helps City of San Antonio meet federal Head Start guidelines for teacher qualifications. 

Graduate course work has included courses on:

  • Foundations of Early Childhood Curriculum
  • Integrated Curriculum in Early Childhood Education
  • Assessment
  • Incorporating Play in the EC Curriculum
  • Supporting the Development of Literacy
  • Mathematics in Early Childhood
  • Advocacy

Head Start Student

San Antonio Book Festival

The San Antonio Book Festival and Texas A&M University San Antonio’s College of Education and Human Development have been collaborating over the last six years to bring together students, community members, authors and children to support literacy and the celebration of books.  A&M-SA students volunteer annually during the annual festival held in April.  Close to seventy or more students volunteer as part of the community and educational outreach as part of our students’ commitment to community service.

San Antonio Book Festival Students San Antonio Book Festival Student

Texas A& M University- San Antonio - HWNT Community Partnership

For eight years Texas A&M University and Hispanic Women’s Network of Texas (HWNT) have partnered to support San Antonio Hispanic women by providing generous scholarships in the community. Dr. Nancy Compean, Associate Professor of Bilingual / ESL Education since 2008, has facilitated the “ university- matching scholarship for 18 TAMU- SA students. A&M-SA - HWNT student scholarship recipients have received between $1000 and $4,000 in scholarships since 2011. The HWNT San Antonio chapter has awarded scholarships to graduating high school seniors, undergraduate, master, and PhD. level students, which include both traditional and non-traditional students. HWNT has a program called “Latinas in Progress Program” (LIPP) which is focused on supporting and preparing Hispanic women attending college. The intention of LIPP is to increase success rates for Hispanic women to remain in higher education and complete a college degree. The LIPP sessions included: Assertiveness Training, Communication Skills, Culture and Civism, College Preparation, Writing skills, Health/Self-care, Professional development, Parent engagement and support. LIPP also provides mentorship for  our scholarship recipients and is committed to remaining connected with a student for one academic year, renewable each year through graduation. Together they journey through the crossroads of life through support, attention, and encouragement. Most of our scholarship recipients are first generation college bound students, and would benefit from having someone to walk with them as they go through the wonders and challenges of college and life.

As an HWNT Board member, Dr. Compean- Garcia has facilitated the partnerships with other S. A. local universities such as Our Lady of the Lake University, University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), Trinity, Incarnate Word, San Antonio Colleges and school districts to match the HWNT scholarship awards every year. Since 2011, HWNT has awarded  21 A&M-SA matching scholarships. HWNT continues to seek university partnerships academically and financially and look forward towards continuing to develop matching scholarship programs. HWNT diligently works with our community partners to offer dynamic LIPP sessions for this year’s group of ladies.


HWNT Award Recipient HWNT Members and Students

Texas A&M University-San Antonio is partnering with A.I.M. Partners in Education to provide resources for parents of children with disabilities.

Visit the A.I.M Partners in Education site.