UVI's School of Education is a Candidate for Accreditation
The most prestigious national accrediting body for teacher
education has granted the University of the Virgin Islands School
of Education candidacy for accreditation. At its October 2011
meeting, the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher
Education (NCATE) approved the University's application for NCATE
candidacy. Candidacy is the status granted to a professional
education unit after it has successfully completed a candidacy
review of preconditions conducted by the Unit Accreditation Board
"The unit's successful completion of the NCATE candidacy review has
come as no surprise," said UVI's School of Education Interim Dean
Dr. Linda Thomas. "The School of Education has long been recognized
for preparing high-quality school professionals. In fact, through
its excellent programs and highly competent instructors, the School
of Education has dedicated itself to preparing P-12 (primary
through 12th grade) teachers and school professionals that are
capable of competing with the best," she said.
In preparation for the site visit, which will occur within the next
year and a half, the School of Education must conduct program
reviews and submit applications for approval from the programs'
respective Specialized Professional Associations. "The specialized
program standards are an integral part of the NCATE accreditation
system because they describe the specialized content that teacher
candidates should master," Dr. Thomas said.
In addition to conducting a review of its programs, the School of
Education must also submit an institutional report that will
document whether or not the unit has met six standards set by
NCATE. The standards that are assessed by NCATE are: the
candidates' knowledge, skills and dispositions; the unit's
assessment system and unit evaluation; field experience and
clinical practice of its students; diversity; faculty
qualifications, performance and development; and unit governance
and resources. "Ultimately, what will determine whether the unit is
granted accreditation," Dr. Thomas said, "is the data we provide to
NCATE demonstrating that these standards have been met."
Becoming NCATE accredited has many benefits for schools or colleges
of Education and the professionals they prepare, Dr. Thomas said.
Because of its ongoing program review, the accreditation process
results in stronger programs. Strong teacher preparation programs
produce graduates who make a difference in P-12 student learning.
Strong teacher preparation programs produce graduates who are in
high demand because they are well prepared for initial licensing
and advanced board certification, Dr. Thomas said.
"Many of the students to whom I have spoken, are pleased to learn
that the School of Education has been granted candidacy and they
anticipate full national accreditation," said Dr. Thomas. Faculty
members in the School of Education are extremely happy with the
results of their efforts, she added.
UVI's School of Education was granted pre-candidacy in 2007 and
began working toward obtaining candidacy in 2008. The School of
Education will be expected to host an accreditation visit during
the fall semester of 2013.
The University of the Virgin Islands is accredited by the
Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of
Colleges and Schools.