Meeting of the Board of Regents | November 2009
THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234
Joseph P. Frey
Extension of Regents Accreditation of Teacher Education Programs at Keuka College, Roberts Wesleyan College, St. Francis College, and Yeshiva University
November 3, 2009
Goals 1, 2, and 3
Issue for Decision (Consent)
Should the Board of Regents extend the accreditation of teacher education programs at Keuka College, Roberts Wesleyan College, St. Francis College, and Yeshiva University?
Reason(s) for Consideration
Required by State regulation.
The question will come before the full Board at its November 2009 meeting, where it will be voted on and action taken.
In 1998, the Board of Regents adopted a new teaching policy, “Teaching to Higher Standards: New York’s Commitment.” As a result of that policy, in 1999, the Board adopted Section 52.21(b)(2)(iv)(c) of the Commissioner’s Regulations, which requires New York State teacher education programs to become accredited by an acceptable accrediting organization. Such accredited teacher education programs are required by regulation to maintain continuous accreditation once initial accreditation is achieved.
Keuka College, Roberts Wesleyan College, St. Francis College, and Yeshiva University applied for Regents Accreditation of Teacher Education (RATE) of their programs leading to certification in the classroom teaching service. At its meeting on June 20, 2006, the Board of Regents voted to grant three years’ accreditation of Keuka College’s teacher education programs with no conditions, and voted to grant three years’ accreditation of St. Francis College’s teacher education programs with the condition that St. Francis College submit a compliance work plan, within 60 days from the action of the Regents, that addresses the concerns cited in the Regents item upon which action was taken. St. Francis College submitted its compliance work plan and received Department approval. Both colleges, as part of their ongoing accreditation, submit annual reports detailing progress in all areas for improvement identified in the Compliance Review Report. The accreditation period for these two institutions was extended by the Board of Regents at its meeting in May 2009 because Division of the Budget approval for the inclusion of peer reviewers on the accreditation team had not been received. Roberts Wesleyan College and Yeshiva University were granted accreditation with condition by the Board on February 13, 2007 for 3 years, through February 12, 2010.
Although budgetary approval to include peer reviewers on the accreditation team was received on August 12, 2009 and Teacher Education Team staff began the process of scheduling RATE accreditation visits needing to be completed during the fall 2009 semester, on August 25, 2009, the Office of College and University Evaluation received a notice indicating that new Division of Budget mandates resulted in any approvals that were granted for upcoming staff travel that will exceed the $500 limit are hereby rescinded. Staff travel for Elmira College is less than the $500 limit but, this new mandate affected the other four accreditation and resulted in the inability of staff to accompany RATE accreditation teams as the site visit coordinator, required by Regents Rules, until Division of Budget approval was received. Staff immediately resubmitted their travel requests but, to date, no approvals have been received. Until approval is received it will not be possible to schedule and coordinate the required accreditation visits. It is not anticipated that such approval will be forthcoming during the fall 2009 semester.
The decision to postpone the visits was made in consultation with the Department’s senior administration.
In order to ensure continuous accreditation for Keuka College, Roberts Wesleyan College, St. Francis College, and Yeshiva University, it is necessary to extend their accreditation period to enable Department staff to gain approval to identify teams of approved site visitors to accompany the Site Visit Coordinator to conduct on-site accreditation peer reviews. To accommodate the anticipated period of time it will take to receive Division of Budget permission, it is necessary to extend the accreditation end date through the spring 2010 semester. Therefore, it is recommended that:
The period of accreditation for Keuka College, Roberts Wesleyan College, St. Francis College, and Yeshiva University be extended to June 30, 2010, with the condition that the required site visits are conducted before the accreditation extension expires in order to determine the institutions’ eligibility for continuing their RATE accreditation.