Under a new and more rigorous teacher preparation evaluation system, The University of Tampa recently renewed its accreditation from the Florida Department of Education (FDOE).
The FDOE recently began the new accreditation system in conjunction with Teacher Prep Inspection-US (TPI-US), which reviews teacher preparation programs to determine how the programs can expand their promising practices and address areas of improvement.
In March, UT’s Department of Education underwent a weeklong inspection that included observation of faculty and students teaching, interviews with stakeholders, analysis of all documentations, and evaluations of work samples and students’ work.
UT was judged on four areas: Quality of Selection/Admission; Quality of Content Knowledge and Teaching Methods; Clinical Placement, Feedback and Candidate Performance; and Quality of Program Performance Management. While under Florida statute, teacher preparation institutions are not judged in the area of Quality of Selection/Admission; in the other three areas, UT was evaluated as good, good and strong.
Tony Erben, chair of UT’s Department of Education, said the process was rigorous but helpful. “We received a lot of beneficial feedback from the inspectors, all of which we have taken onboard to aid our ongoing continuous improvement efforts to graduate the best possible teachers equipped to teach in the schools of today.”
This accreditation will act as UT’s springboard to a national accreditation in Spring 2020.
TPI-US envisions a system of teacher preparation where every level of leadership takes relentless ownership of their graduates’ effectiveness in the classroom and continuously evaluates their practices to ensure new teachers — and their students — are well prepared to thrive on day one. Since beginning initial pilot inspections in 2013, TPI-US has completed over 80 inspections in 20 states.