National Urban Alliance (NUA) Professional Development

The Pedagogy of Confidence development reflects collaborations with a wide range of school districts especially with the National Urban Alliance for Effective Education, founded with The College Board and Columbia University’s Teachers College. The focus is on recognizing and amplifying the strengths of underserved students – with the recognition that all students have talents and gifts that when nourished will blossom. Yvette Jackson was for many years the CEO at National Urban Alliance, and Robert Seth Price has been a Senior Scholar.

The National Urban Alliance’s (NUA) mission is to substantiate an irrefutable belief in the capacity of all public school children to achieve the high intellectual performances demanded by our ever changing global community. Our focus is teacher and administrator quality through professional development which incorporates current research from cognitive neuroscience on learning, teaching, and leading. We partner with school districts to support the building of their capacity to advocate community-wide responsibility for realizing the learning potential of its children.

Since our founding in 1989 at Columbia University’s Teachers College with the College Board, the National Urban Alliance for Effective Education (NUA) has provided professional developmentadvocacy and organizational guidance that transform urban and suburban schools.

We are passionate in striving toward a world in which barriers to high levels of learning borne of racism, sexism and economic disadvantage are eliminated for all children.

Our approach is guided by the The Pedagogy of Confidence, the fearless expectation and support for the high intellectual performance of all students, especially those who are dependent on the school and community for the skills and support needed to attain high achievement. We uncover strengths of students and teachers and then build on those strengths.

Core Beliefs

National Urban Alliance focus is on three core beliefs:

  • Intelligence is modifiable;
  • All students benefit from a focus on high intellectual performance;
  • Learning is influenced by the interaction of culture, language and cognition.

NUA has education experts who work with teachers, students, school administrators and communities to identify strengths to address the needs and break down barriers that inhibit achievement. We are values-directed and data-driven.

NUA partners with school districts across the country to accelerate and raise student achievement through professional development based on the Pedagogy of Confidence and designed to promote students’ high intellectual performances. Our efforts have resulted in tangible results for the educators and students we serve and we have contributed to the knowledge base of how to transform schools.settings.

NUA partners with school districts to provide ongoing, embedded professional development using research-based instructional strategies that foster higher-level thinking. Each partnership is overseen by an NUA Project Director and district-designated Partnership Coordinator. Professional development services are provided by NUA Mentors on-site in each participating school where the mentor models and teaches best instructional practices, while guiding and coaching teachers with implementing best practices in their classrooms.

The NUA has been a catalyst for positive change in areas such as Albany, New York; Bridgeport, Conn.; Indianapolis; Minneapolis (11 urban and suburban district desegregation initiatives); Newark, New Jersey; New York City; San Francisco; Seattle; Birmingham; Greene County, Georgia; East Allen, Indiana and Prince George’s County, Maryland.

Eric Cooper

Founder and President
National Urban Alliance
for Effective Education