EKU Professional Education Unit Accreditation Reaffirmed

Eastern Kentucky University’s Professional Education Unit accreditation has been reaffirmed by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.

The Unit includes elements of all five colleges on campus – Education, Arts and Sciences, Health Sciences, Justice and Safety, and Business and Technology.

“It is vitally important to be NCATE accredited because NCATE and the Kentucky Educational Professional Standards Board (EPSB) share the same accreditation standards,” said Dr. Bill Phillips, dean of the University’s College of Education. “In order for the education professionals – including teachers, principals, school counselors, librarians others – that Eastern prepares to be licensed by the state, our Professional Education Unit must be NCATE accredited. The Kentucky licensing board requires all Kentucky teacher education programs to be accredited by NCATE as well as by EPSB.”

While the NCATE accreditation assessment occurs every seven years, Phillips said, “We are in a constant state of assessing and improving our programs to meet new and revised NCATE standards as well as to ensure we are preparing education professionals who are best able to meet the challenges they face in Kentucky schools.

“The idea behind the accreditation process is to show constant improvement in both the assessment system and the operational elements of the Professional Education Unit,” he added. NCATE has six basic areas for review with a large number of sub categories. EPSB also follows these standards as well as the Kentucky Teacher Standards.”

The College met NCATE’s increasingly stringent standards in such areas as quality, performance and development of faculty; field experiences and clinical practice; and diversity. EKU also passed a rigorous site visit by an accreditation team of teachers and teacher educators, education policymakers and school specialists from across the country.

Eastern has a long history of excellence in the field of teacher education, Phillips said, “and the NCATE accreditation further confirms the quality of our programs and services, as well as of our faculty, students and graduates.”

Phillips emphasized that the reaccreditation was the result of teamwork across the Colleges involved in the Professional Education Unit. “NCATE accreditation can only be achieved with the cooperative effort of the college deans, department chairs, and faculty who are part of the unit.” 

Published on July 18, 2011