College of Education and Health Sciences Peoria, Illinois Institution Comment Comments submitted by: Dr. Joan Sattler, Dean, College of Education and Health Sciences; and Dr. D. Antonio Cantù, Chair, Department of Teacher Education
According to state statute and established policies, Bradley University’s College of Education and Health Sciences is accountable to the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), teacher preparation standards of national specialized professional associations, and most importantly, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), which has responsibility for licensing graduates of teacher education programs in the state and for assuring that all graduates have requisite knowledge, skills, and dispositions to best prepare the nation’s students. It must be noted that no teacher education program in Illinois or nationally is accountable in any way to the National Council for Teacher Quality (NCTQ). As mentioned above, in Illinois there is only one state accrediting organization, ISBE. In addition, Bradley University has elected to have our programs evaluated through rigorous assessments including on-site visits, student outcome data, annual reports, by NCATE, and by the following national specialized professional associations: n n n n n n n n n n n
American Association of Family & Consumer Sciences Association for Childhood Education International American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages Council for Exceptional Children National Association for the Education of Young Children National Association of Schools of Art and Design National Association of Schools of Music National Council for the Social Studies National Council of Teachers of English National Council of Teachers of Mathematics National Science Teachers Association
Currently, Bradley University’s teacher education program holds state and national accreditation and is nationally recognized by all aforementioned national specialized professional associations. With respect to the private organization that conducted this review, NCTQ, it is not a government council, nor a recognized accrediting body. It operates independently from the Illinois State Board of Education and U.S. Department of Education. In the words of the President and CEO of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, Dr. Sharon Robinson, commenting on the work of the NCTQ, “These studies are conducted using a methodology that is faulty in many respects, and the resulting reports are predictable. The objective is to make headlines, not headway, although participation requires a tremendous investment of time for any institution.” In fact, no representative of NCTQ visited Bradley, or conducted interviews with students, faculty, or field placement staff. Our experience mirrors that of other states and institutions of higher education subjected to their review. We were alerted that NCTQ found fault in teacher education programs in all states reviewed to date, ignoring the fact that these programs hold state and, in many cases, national accreditation. However, we were informed in NCTQ correspondence, dated October 23, 2009, that “…the institutions evaluated are not volunteers.” NCTQ further stated that they would proceed with “evaluation” of our program using materials published online. We, therefore, provided requested information hoping that NCTQ would evaluate
NCTQ Teacher Preparation Program Design Ratings
the evidence according to reliable and valid research methodology. Unfortunately, NCTQâ€™s flawed methodology cannot represent an accurate portrayal of Bradley Universityâ€™s nationally recognized teacher education program. To access a comprehensive, on-site evaluation of our program, please see the NCATE Web site.