American College of Education and Distinctive Schools Join Forces to Develop Special Education Teachers


June 26, 2024

Bianca Stakes

Bianca Stakes

Marketing Content and Communications Specialist

The partnership provides certification assistance for teachers at high-performing public charter schools in Chicago.

Indianapolis, IN – June 26, 2024 – American College of Education (ACE) recently partnered with Distinctive Schools to create an accessible pathway for charter school teachers in Chicago to grow into licensed special education teachers by earning their Learning Behavior Specialist 1 (LBS1) endorsement.

This partnership with ACE helps Distinctive Schools fulfill their goal of providing their staff access to avenues toward subject matter expertise, career advancement and personal growth. It will also increase local licensed special education staff who can support diverse student populations.

“It’s exciting to collaborate with Distinctive Schools and provide a solution that meets their workforce needs,” ACE Senior Vice President and Head of Education Solutions Shannon Penrose said. “By investing in their talented staff, Distinctive Schools will not only help retain high-quality educators but also support their continuous growth and development. We look forward to supporting their teachers in their professional journeys.”

A nonprofit organization since 2011, Distinctive Schools strives to break down systematic barriers that can disrupt student and staff goal achievement. It’s also committed to creating opportunities for career advancement and personal growth.

“We are thrilled to explore the expansion of our partnership with ACE,” Distinctive Schools Chief Talent Officer Sami Baugh added. “This collaboration has already proven to be incredibly beneficial, and we are excited about the potential opportunities and initiatives that lie ahead.  Together, we will continue to enhance the professional experiences for our students, team members and community.”

About American College of Education

American College of Education (ACE) is an accredited, fully online college specializing in high-quality, affordable programs in education, business, leadership, healthcare and nursing. ACE is ranked #2 on Newsweek’s 2023 top online colleges list. Headquartered in Indianapolis, ACE offers more than 60 innovative and engaging programs for adult students to pursue a doctorate, specialist, master’s or bachelor’s degree, along with graduate-level certificate programs. In addition to being a leader in online education, ACE is a Certified B Corporation and part of a global movement to use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems.

About Distinctive Schools

Distinctive Schools is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to supporting and accelerating the work of charter schools. The team includes passionate educators and determined leaders who innovate, trailblaze and collaboratively lead a public education transformation, as well as create diverse, joyful, welcoming communities rooted in social justice and rigorous learning. Distinctive Schools supports all learners to be engaged, curious and to achieve their full potential. 

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