Lander University's College of Education has been reaccredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). James Cibulka, president of the Council, said accreditation means the college and its programs meet rigorous standards established by the professional education community.
The U.S. Department of Education recognizes NCATE as a specialized accrediting body for schools, colleges and departments of education.
College of Education Dean Dr. Judith Neufeld said an accrediting team conducted an onsite review that included one-on-one discussions with members of the faculty, students, local schoolteachers and principals, and community leaders. In addition, the college was required to provide supporting documents covering a three-year period.
Neufeld said of the accreditation review, "It gives us a chance to have outsiders look at our program. We also conduct annual reviews to determine what is working well and what we could improve."
She extended her thanks to Dr. Dava O'Connor, chair of Lander's Department of Teacher Education and professor of special education, for her role in the reaccreditation process. "She did a wonderful job. It would not have happened with her."
University President Daniel Ball congratulated Neufeld, O'Connor and the College of Education faculty and staff. He said he has never witnessed or been a part of a teacher education program that received such a remarkable NCATE reaccreditation report. He added, "The work of the leadership and faculty in convincing NCATE that the College of Education is as good as we have always known ourselves to be makes Lander even more distinctive."
Neufeld said, on average, 500 Lander students major in education in the nine university programs that include a teaching component. Between 90 and 100 of them graduate with teaching degrees each year.