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Toni Jennings Exceptional Education Institute
Header: supporting the preparation of exceptional educators
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TJEEI Mission
With a commitment to equity and excellence, the Toni Jennings Exceptional Education Institute provides opportunities for lifelong learning and support for children and adults with exceptional needs and their families through interdisciplinary research and practice, professional development, and partner collaboration.

 The Toni Jennings Exceptional Education Institute is tangible proof that one person, or in this case, one family, can make a difference. As their child entered the public school system, one family learned that the teacher in their son's classroom was not certified to teach students with exceptional needs. They talked with others and learned this was not uncommon. The need to recruit, educate and retain qualified teachers had become critical. Working with their Florida state senator, the family approached the University of Central Florida College of Education and Human Performance with their ideas. A proposal to add an exceptional education component to the planned UCF Teaching Academy was submitted to the Florida Legislature. With Senator Toni Jennings' assistance, the proposal became part of the 2000 budget. In August of 2000, at a special ceremony, the institute became the Toni Jennings Exceptional Education Institute in recognition of Senator Jennings' efforts.

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