National board awards accreditation to teacher preparation programs
NEW PALTZ -- The School of Education and the Professional Education Unit at the State University of New York at New Paltz has been awarded accreditation by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), the organization responsible for professional accreditation of teacher education. This accreditation covers initial teacher preparation and advanced preparation programs.
According to Dr. Robert J. Michael, dean of the School of Education, all NCATE standards were met during the team's initial visit to New Paltz, a gratifying result to an effort that took more than two-and-a-half years of arduous preparation by the faculty and staff. Under the leadership of Dr. Elaine Hofstetter, assistant dean for accreditation, the preparation involved extensive collaboration with the liberal arts faculty and public school teachers and administrators, as well as alumni and current students.
"Receiving national accreditation through NCATE is truly an honor for the School of Education and the Professional Education Unit," said Michael. "Because we are recognized as being NCATE accredited, our graduates will be viewed as being highly qualified and well prepared in their certification area."
The NCATE accreditation process establishes rigorous standards for teacher education programs, holds accredited institutions accountable for meeting these standards, and encourages unaccredited schools to demonstrate the quality of their programs by working for, and achieving, professional accreditation. NCATE accredits more than 562 institutions, which produce two-thirds of the nation's new teacher graduates each year.
The U.S. Department of Education recognizes NCATE as a professional accrediting body for schools, departments and colleges of education. On-site visits, document review and accreditation decisions are all carried out by professionals from the education community, including teachers, school specialists and teacher educators, as well as members of the public and education policymakers.
Steven Poskanzer, president of New Paltz, said, "I am delighted that NCATE which is widely regarded as the 'gold standard' for the quality of teacher education programs across the nation has affirmed the quality and attention to students' needs that characterize New Paltz's long-standing and highly successful teacher education programs."
The Professional Education Unit at New Paltz consists of the School of Education, the Art Education program, and the Speech and Language Disabilities program.
Collectively, the group has adopted a conceptual framework for its programs, titled "Caring, Critical and Reflective Professionals Responsive to the Needs of a Diverse Society." This framework includes six values and commitments that the unit strives to cultivate among its own faculty and staff, as well as in the candidates it serves. The six values are: inquiry, intellectual growth, professionalism, appreciation of human diversity, advocacy for students and democratic citizenship.
For more information about the SUNY New Paltz Professional Education Unit and the School of Education, visit www.newpaltz.edu/schoolofed/accreditation.html. More information about NCATE is available at www.ncate.org.
Located in the heart of a dynamic college town, 90 minutes from metropolitan New York City, the State University of New York at New Paltz is a highly selective college of about 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students.
One of the most well-regarded public colleges in the nation, New Paltz delivers an extraordinary number of majors in Business, Liberal Arts, Sciences, Engineering, Fine and Performing Arts and Education.
New Paltz embraces its culture as a community where talented and independent minded people from around the world create close personal links with real scholars and artists who love to teach.