Minnesota Commissioner of Education Visits UMD

Commissioner Mary Cathryn Ricker has held the position since January and she is visiting six different schools around the region.

DULUTH, Minn. – Education students at the University of Minnesota Duluth were visited by the Minnesota Commissioner of Education Mary Cathryn Ricker on her Back to School tour.

She stopped by schools to talk to teachers and students and learn more about education in the state.

Commissioner Ricker has held the position since January and she is visiting six different schools around the region.

On Wednesday she spoke to UMD seniors who are in a class about teaching Indigenous students.

The seniors are one semester away from becoming student teachers and Commissioner Ricker hoped to impart some of her knowledge on them.

“I was hoping to talk to them today to just not only talk about what the research says about what the best ways are to meet the needs of students and to talk about those really strong learning conditions. Those learning conditions that meet the need of students by focusing on their academic needs, their social emotional needs, and doing that in a safe and welcoming environment,” said Commissioner Ricker.

For the students in the class it was an unprecedented experience to ask questions and learn from a teacher who has taught all over the world and now is in charge of education in Minnesota as commissioner.

“It’s really a satisfying experience knowing that there are people in the government advocating for us and advocating for better teacher practices and overall just helping us out in order to better help our students because that’s what it’s all about it’s all about helping the students,” said Hunter Hamby, who is majoring in instrumental music education at UMD.

Commissioner Ricker also said that a large part of traveling to schools is learning from the students themselves.

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