Programs in the College of Education Department of Special Education and Master of Education in Teaching were recently recognized by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), formerly the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and the Hawaiʻi Teacher Standards Board (HTSB).
The Department of Special Education (SPED) received full national recognition from the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) for three of its programs – BEd Dual Preparation in Special Education and Elementary Education, PBSPED in Mild/Moderate Disabilities, and PBSPED in Severe Disabilities/Autism. The department is required to submit a Specialty Professional Association (SPA) report for each program.
SPED faculty developed a series of assessments that the candidates completed during their program. These assessments, which are aligned with CEC and Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) standards, are monitored and submitted to the CEC for review. “The entire process seems daunting, but the special education faculty willingly committed their time and expertise to ensure we successfully completed the recognition process,” Associate Professor Tricia Sheehey said.
The College of Education is the only public institution of higher education in Hawaiʻi with nationally recognized special education teacher training programs. SPED Chair Amelia Jenkins said, “Receiving national accreditation is testament to the quality of the faculty and personnel in our department. It also demonstrates how dedicated they are to preparing highly qualified special education teachers for the state of Hawaiʻi.”
The Master of Education in Teaching (MEdT) program earned national recognition for the next seven years from NCATE/CAEP for its new multi-subject Secondary Education Initial Licensure/Post-Baccalaureate (IL/PB) program. Accreditation reviewers gave special praise to the program, saying it should be commended for aligning assessments to SPA and IL/PB standards.
MEdT’s Hawaiian Immersion and Hawaiian Language programs were approved by HTSB. “This approval really speaks to the quality of the programs content, the delivery of our instructors and partner schools, and most importantly the commitment and resilience of our students,” Cohort Coordinator Kahea Faria said.
Following the NCATE/CAEP approval of SPA and Institutional Reports, the college will host a Board of Examiners (BOE) team for an onsite visit April 13–15, 2014. “We are delighted to welcome the BOE team to campus in this last step of the continuing accreditation process. We want to share with the team in person about the excellent and innovative work we do here,” said Beth Pateman, Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.