Response to the National Council of Teacher Quality Report
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media Contact: Dana Navarro
November 9, 2010 (773) 442-4227
Statement from Northeastern Illinois University in response to National Council of Teacher Quality Report
CHICAGO - The College of Education (COE) at Northeastern Illinois University (NEIU) engages in rigorous peer review on a regular basis and values feedback that assists us in continually improving our programs. All of our programs that prepare school and community professionals are approved by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE). We voluntarily seek national accreditation, and the COE is accredited by the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), an organization whose standards are based on rigorous research in our field. We submit annual program reports to ISBE, and the COE is reviewed every seven years by a well-trained team of school and university professionals from NCATE. Our school partners, our advisory boards, and our internal and external data-collection systems provide us with regular feedback that we use to continually analyze and improve our candidates’ outcomes, the effectiveness of our programs, and our COE operations.
We are confident that the National Council of Teacher Quality (NCTQ) and Advance Illinois join us in our quest to ensure that each and every P-12 student in Illinois gets a world-class education in a classroom staffed by an excellent teacher. We wish that the analysis of our elementary education and special education programs that NCTQ conducted was more helpful in this endeavor. Because the research methodology utilized in this process does not meet the rigorous standards that are accepted in our field—those set forth by the American Educational Research Association—the value of the feedback that has been provided to us is minimal. For example, some of the NEIU analysis was initially completed using syllabi from Northern Illinois University, causing us to lose confidence that any rigorous research safeguards were in place.
Our faculty and administration complied with all requests from NCTQ and responded to all requests for syllabi and other materials with a spirit of collegiality and a willingness to learn from an outside assessment of our programs. In the end, our attempts to correct inaccurate or incomplete analyses were often ignored or misinterpreted, and the final results for NEIU contain many incorrect conclusions. We appreciate the many areas where NCTQ felt that we were meeting their self-designed standards, yet our hope that the feedback provided would be yet another set of robust data from which to consider program improvements was unfulfilled.
We look forward to the day when Illinois has implemented a state-wide data system that will assist us in connecting our teacher graduates’ work in the classroom to the success of their students. We also look forward to continuing to work with Advance Illinois on developing ways to ensure that there is a well-prepared teacher in every classroom who has the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to help each child in Illinois achieve to his or her highest potential.
Any further inquiries about this case may be directed to Dana Navarro, NEIU Office of Public Relations, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (773) 442-4227.
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