GSE Reaction to National Council on Teacher Quality Teacher Education Report

The National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) recently released a report rating teacher preparation programs based in colleges and universities throughout the country.  Rutgers Graduate School of Education supports efforts to raise teacher quality in America’s classrooms. 
We have been preparing teachers for New Jersey since 1923.  We developed the first advanced degree for school leaders in New Jersey in 1930.  Given our rich history we are carefully reviewing the ratings attributed to our teacher education programs.
As a professional school within New Jersey’s flagship public university, the production and dissemination of knowledge about education is central to our mission and is achieved in many ways. Our faculty makes unique and significant contributions to educational scholarship by employing rigorous methods to understand, design, evaluate, and improve learning environments, educational practices, policies and procedures. Notably, a GSE research team was selected by the New Jersey Department of Education to lead an independent evaluation of the teacher evaluation pilot program that informed the rollout of a statewide evaluation program now currently underway in the state.  
We believe strongly that quality teachers are one of several integral components to creating an informed and productive society. We agree that how teacher preparation programs fulfill their responsibility to educate teachers who are effective in the classroom is crucial. Recently Dr. Eugenia Etkina was honored with the American Association of Physics Teachers’ Robert A. Millikan Medal for her notable and creative contributions to the teaching of Physics.  We are committed to preparing future teachers to meet the educational needs of diverse populations.  Our Teacher Education students are frequently honored with the NJDOE Distinguished Student Teacher Award.
Careful evaluation with rigorous standards for professional practice is nothing new to the GSE.  The Graduate School of Education’s teacher preparation programs are robust and subject to state review and approval, rigorous self-studies, external reviews, and a process of continuous self-analysis to attain national accreditation through the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC). These findings are used to revise our programs to ensure that we are training and producing high-quality educators. TEAC will soon be consolidated into the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).  GSE Dean Richard De Lisi served on the CAEP commission charged with defining new standards for educator preparation, and chaired a working group on Quality Assurance and Continuous Improvement. 
The quality of our programs is evident from the honors and recognition we have received nationally, the long list of our distinguished and successful alumni, and from the accolades and testimonials we receive from supervisors throughout the state who seek our graduates to join their faculty.  In the newly created Annual Education Preparation Provider Reports authored by the New Jersey Department of Education, graduates of the Rutgers Graduate School of Education programs that were ranked had the second highest rate of employment in public schools in the state.  
Rutgers GSE’s elementary teacher education program and the secondary teacher education program were rated independently.  We have identified some errors or omissions in the report data and have created a public document addressing all of the ratings criteria.  Please click here to view these direct responses.  Information specific to our Teacher Education programs are available by visiting our Teacher Education program pages.