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|SOUTHEASTERN TEACHER PREP PROGRAM GETS "STRAIGHT A'S" ON STATE REPORT
HAMMOND -- Southeastern Louisiana
University's teacher preparation program
has been given "straight As" on the annual institutional report cards
released today (April 8) by the Louisiana Board of Regents.
Earning an overall performance
label of "exemplary," the university received an "A" for institutional
performance, which is based on the passage rate on the PRAXIS examination
required for teacher licensure and on a survey of graduates' satisfaction
with their teacher preparation program. The university also earned an "A+"
on the “Quantity Index,” which is comprised of both the raw number of program
completers and additional recognition for producing teachers in critical
shortage categories such as special education, mathematics and science
teaching, and minority graduates in all areas of certification.
Southeastern was one of a dozen
institutions rated as "exemplary," the highest performance label. Last
year the university was judged as "high performing," the second highest
of five general classifications for rating teacher preparation.
Southeastern's PRAXIS passage
rate was 97.2 percent, just short of the 98 percent required for an "A+"
grade. A total of 278 of the 286 students who completed the program in
2002-2003 passed the PRAXIS. The figure includes 232 completers in the
regular teacher preparation program and 46 in the alternative certification
Overall, Southeastern graduates
judged the university's program as "excellent" in their responses to 33
questions about factors such as planning, instruction, management and school
"The report reflects what has
always been a major mission at Southeastern, namely the preparation of
quality teachers to serve our area's schools," said Southeastern President
Randy Moffett. "The credit for this success is directly due to the efforts
of the administrators and faculty of our College of Education and Human
Development and the College of Arts and Sciences. Preparation of teachers
at Southeastern is a coordinated effort designed to ensure that graduates
have excellent academic content knowledge as well as a strong basis in
“I am especially pleased that
Southeastern scored well in terms of both quality and quantity,” said Martha
Thornhill, interim dean of the College of Education and Human Development.
“Not only are we preparing a large number of teachers to meet the critical
shortage of certified teachers in Louisiana, but we also have clear, objective
evidence that those teachers are highly skilled in their craft. Certainly,
they will have direct positive impact on the future learning of Louisiana's
Thornhill said since fall 2003,
Southeastern students are now required to pass all parts of the PRAXIS
examination before student teaching.
Moffett said he was especially
pleased to see high scores from Southeastern graduates who are now engaged
in classroom teaching. Graduates graded their preparation programs in the
areas of planning, instruction, classroom management and school improvement.
"This is a strong indication
that we are appropriately preparing new teachers for their profession,"
he said. "They know what to expect in the classroom and how to apply the
knowledge and skills they have learned."
Southeastern is one of Louisiana's
largest producers of teacher candidates with approximately 300 graduates
per year. The total number of students admitted to the program in 2002-03
was 856, with 285 students participating in supervised student teaching
or internship programs. The university employs a total of 65 full and part
time faculty in professional education, maintaining a student to faculty
ratio of about four to one in student teaching supervision.
Southeastern was the first teacher
preparation program in the state to actually guarantee the performance
of its graduates in area school systems. In 2000, the university
promised that its graduates will have strong knowledge of their subject,
can teach to a diverse student population and know how to infuse technology
into the curriculum. If teachers fail to meet specified standards, Southeastern
will re-train them at its expense and provide them with an experienced
The teacher preparation program
was also the first in Louisiana to be reaccredited by the National Council
for Accreditation of Teacher Education in 2002 under NCATE's revised stringent
standards. NCATE is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as the
primary accrediting body for teacher preparation programs.
Other highlights about Southeastern's
program noted in the report card included:
– the opening of a new $8 million annex
to the Cate Teacher Education Center in 2003. The annex features 10 new
general classrooms, a 200-seat lecture hall, technology classroom and technology
laboratory classroom, and three conference rooms.
– replacement of its non-degree alternative
certification program with a Master of Arts in Teaching degree, a program
available completely on-line to non-certified teachers who are currently
involved in classroom instruction. More than 800 students were accepted
into the program since summer 2002, with over 400 students participating
– strong success in keeping teacher
graduates in the classroom through the Teacher Scholars Program, an accelerated
master's degree program that provides intensive mentoring for first year
teachers. After six years, 97 percent of teacher participants are still
in the classroom.
– receipt in 2002-2003 of a $1.3 million
federal grant to provide quality professional development to teachers of
limited English proficient students in four neighboring parish school systems:
East Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Livingston and Tangipahoa parishes.