The School of Education at the University of Guam has been granted seven years of accreditation by the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation.
The accreditation covers all of the school’s degree programs, which include bachelor’s programs for elementary and secondary education and seven master’s programs.
In its Jan. 14 decision, the commission also commended the programs for being committed to culturally responsive practices and efforts to diversify the educational workforce.
“We are passionate about advancing education in this region, and we’re so proud of the teachers that we produce,” said Alicia C. Aguon, dean of the UOG School of Education. “This accreditation confirms the expertise and dedication of our faculty and also the desire of our community partners to guide our students to future success.”
The accreditation will remain in effect through Dec. 31, 2027.
National accreditation assures the quality and accountability of an institution’s programs via a nongovernmental, nonregulatory process of self-study and peer review. The process is standards- and evidence-based.
“What this means is that our education degree programs provide students with a learning experience that is nationally recognized and that our programs’ cultural competency uniquely prepares them to teach children in our island’s schools,” said UOG Senior Vice President and Provost Anita Borja Enriquez.
The accreditation commission stated that graduates of UOG’s education programs “are prepared to work effectively as professional educators and […] are able to adapt to different contexts and to grow professionally.”
The commissioners also noted UOG’s robust support for cultural heritage and investment of considerable resources in partnership and collaboration with other institutions to support educator growth. This, in part, references a 12-year partnership between the School of Education and the College of Micronesia in the Federated States of Micronesia and with the Yap, Chuuk, and Kosrae Departments of Education.
“This accreditation recognizes the School of Education’s efforts to bring cultural wisdom and diversity to the field of education and to create partnerships to improve life in our island communities,” said UOG President Thomas W. Krise. “These are two goals that we have university-wide and will continue to make progress toward under our Para Hulo’ Strategic Plan.”
The president and CEO of the AAQEP, Mark LaCelle-Peterson, congratulated the university, its faculty and staff, and all stakeholders.
“The programs made a clear case for quality and documented their deep commitment to culturally responsive practice supported by close relationships with schools and stakeholders throughout the region,” he said.
Serving on the accreditation team from the UOG School of Education were Associate Professors Michelle Santos and Dean Olah, Assistant Professors Jackysha Green and Geraldine James, and Program Coordinator Pascual Olivares.
AAQEP has 135 educator preparation providers participating in its accreditation system across 24 states and territories.
Founded in 2017, AAQEP is a membership association and quality assurance agency that provides accreditation services and formative support to all types of educator preparation providers. The organization promotes excellent, effective, and innovative educator preparation that is committed to evidence-based improvement in a collaborative professional environment. Visit aaqep.org for more information.
(UOG News Release)