Committees at Work


Accreditation Committee

The College’s Accreditation Committee ensures the quality of initial teacher education programs in Ontario through the regular review and accreditation of these programs.

The accreditation process assures the profession and the public that teacher education programs meet the quality assurance requirements established under regulation. The programs integrate theory and practice so that graduates acquire the appropriate knowledge and skills to teach in Ontario classrooms.

The Accreditation Committee appoints an accreditation panel to review each pre-service teacher education program. Existing programs are reviewed cyclically, usually every seven years, to confirm that the program continues to meet regulatory requirements.

Panel members examine all documents submitted by the faculty and conduct a site visit of programs applying for accreditation renewal. The panel interviews faculty members and various stakeholders, examines supporting evidence, and reviews facilities and resources. Members of the public are always provided with an opportunity to offer feedback about the programs under review.

The panel then develops its report, setting out its recommendations and detailing its supporting evidence. The Accreditation Committee considers the information in the panel’s report and issues a decision.

Enhanced Teacher Education Program

As of September 1, 2015, the initial teacher education program at Ontario's faculties of education expanded to four semesters, including twice the amount of practise teaching time (80 days, an increase from 40). The enhanced program has a greater focus on students' mental health and well-being, parent engagement and communication, and Special Education among other core elements. Teacher candidates will also benefit from an increased emphasis on supporting students with special learning needs and those from diverse communities. The Accreditation Committee plays a critical role in the accreditation of enhanced programs at all Ontario faculties of education.

Accreditation Resources

Resources that support the accreditation of initial teacher education programs, including the   Pre-Service Accreditation Handbook and the Accreditation Panel Member Guide, were updated to reflect regulatory changes and enhancements made in 2015. Accreditation staff also created resources that support providers in preparing verification reports and the Accreditation Committee in issuing decisions in order to streamline the process.

Accreditation Process Review

As part of its continuous improvement, the College initiated a review of its accreditation processes to identify efficiencies. The consultative review resulted in an amendment to the Accreditation Regulation detailing changes to the size and composition of accreditation panels.

As of September 1, 2015, each panel now has a minimum of four members (down from six). They will continue to include one person nominated by the institution providing the program under review and a roster member with experience evaluating or teaching in a faculty of education program. Panels now include one appointed and one elected Council member from the Accreditation Committee. For programs in specialized areas, the panel will continue to include at least one member with appropriate expertise.

As a result of this review process, enhancements were also made to sections of the Accreditation Regulation governing substantial changes to teacher education programs, allowing for a more streamlined review of program changes. These regulatory enhancements also address additions to programs, such as a new area of study or a new language of instruction. Council approved the enhancements, and the regulation is pending government finalization.

New Pre-service Program Option

As of September 1, 2015, the Accreditation Regulation enables a new program option that builds on existing Ontario models.

Providers will have the option of designing a program that integrates professional education with other coursework that focuses on education studies. This program would lead to one degree in education, meeting the minimum duration requirement for post-secondary degree study and the initial teacher education component.

Accreditation Reviews

In 2015, the College did not conduct pre-service teacher education program reviews because of the implementation of the Enhanced Teacher Education Program at faculties of education.

In late 2015, the School of Education and Professional Learning at Trent University submitted an application for the initial accreditation of two new programs leading to a Bachelor of Education degree — Indigenous.

Monitoring Programs with Conditions

A faculty of education is required to provide an annual report to the Accreditation Committee when a teacher education program is accredited with conditions. This report details the faculty’s progress in satisfying the conditions of the program’s accreditation. Faculties may also request that the committee remove conditions from accredited programs.

The Accreditation Committee received and reviewed annual reports for the following programs:

The committee removed all conditions from the program at Nipissing University, which is now accredited without conditions. The University of Ottawa (English-language program) and the Université d’Ottawa (French-language program) continue to work toward satisfying program conditions.

Substantial Change Decisions

The Accreditation Committee received and reviewed a substantial change request for the following programs:

The Committee approved the change to the program at Brock University. It also confirmed the continued accreditation with conditions imposed on the modified program at Université d’Ottawa.

Revocation of Pre-service Programs

Two faculties of education notified the Accreditation Committee of their intention to no longer provide specific accredited programs of teacher education.

The committee revoked accreditation of the Junior/Intermediate area of study only in the following programs effective September 1, 2015:

The committee revoked accreditation of the following programs effective September 1, 2015:

New Accreditation Committee

Changes to the Accreditation Committee membership took place following the installation of the new College Council in July, including the election of a new Chair and Vice-Chair for the committee.

Accreditation staff facilitated a two-day orientation in August  for the the Accreditation Committee  and new panel roster membersthat provided an overview of regulatory and operational processes for issuing accreditation decisions.

Training Session for Accreditation Panel Volunteers

In November, the College trained 22 participants, including members of the Accreditation Committee, members of the profession and those with faculty of education or accreditation experience, to serve on accreditation panels over the next three years. Through a series of simulated activities linked to the process of accreditation reviews, participants explored aspects of the College’s regulatory authority and procedures for the accreditation of pre-service teacher education programs in Ontario. Participants also benefited from a panel discussion led by the deans of faculties of education in Ontario and an interactive presentation on First Nations, Métis and Inuit education.

Public Input

The College invites public input about the teacher education programs it reviews.

An email notification tool on the College website allows members of the public to learn about upcoming accreditation reviews and offer input on the quality of the programs for the panel’s consideration. Social media outreach throughout the accreditation review and open forum meetings offered during site visits  provide the public with opportunities to offer input to the panel.

Visit the College website to learn about upcoming accreditation reviews or follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

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