University of Alaska Southeast Achieves Full Reaccreditation of Teacher Education Programs
This week the Alaska College of Education (AKCoE) at the University of Alaska Southeast (UAS) received confirmation of its accreditation by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). CAEP accreditation signifies that the AKCoE has met the rigorous standards set forth for educator preparation. This accreditation is for the College’s initial licensure and advanced programs. The Alaska Department of Education and Early Development requires the state’s university education units to hold CAEP accreditation.
CAEP is the sole nationally recognized accrediting body for educator preparation. Accreditation is a nongovernmental activity based on peer review that serves the dual functions of assuring quality and promoting improvement. CAEP was created by the consolidation of the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the Teacher Education Accreditation Council. It is a unified accreditation system intent on raising the performance of all institutions focused on educator preparation. Approximately 800 educator preparation providers participate in the CAEP Accreditation system, including some previously accredited through former standards.
Educator preparation providers seeking accreditation must pass peer review on five standards, which are based on two principles: 1) solid evidence that the provider’s graduates are competent and caring educators, and 2) solid evidence that the provider’s educator staff have the capacity to create a culture of evidence and use it to maintain and enhance the quality of the professional programs they offer. If a program fails to meet one of the five standards, it is placed on probation for two years. Probation may be lifted in two years if a program provides evidence that it meets the standard.
The UAS Alaska College of Education serves students across the state and offers initial licensure programs in elementary, secondary and special education and advanced programs in special education, reading and education leadership. Graduates of the programs, working in more than forty school districts, are consistently recognized as being well prepared to teach in Alaska’s culturally rich schools.
UAS Chancellor Rick Caulfield states, “UAS has a long history of leadership in offering programs of excellence in teacher preparation and educational leadership. These highly respected programs produce graduates from diverse backgrounds who serve in schools across the entire state. UAS is a leader in the University of Alaska system in offering innovative programs of high quality. I congratulate our faculty and staff, working under the leadership of Executive Dean Steve Atwater, in achieving this recognition.”
In commenting on the achievement, Dean Atwater noted that “the shift from the NCATE to CAEP accreditation process was significant for the College. Receiving full CAEP accreditation is affirmation that the College’s underlying structure is sound and that there is a cohesion among the programs to ensure consistency to the students’ experience.”
The CAEP accreditation for the Alaska College of Education is effective until Spring 2025.
Learn more about teacher education programs available through the Alaska College of Education at UAS or by speaking to an advisor at 907-796-6076.