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Bethel ‘Exceeds Expectations’ in SBE’s Teacher Prep Report Card

BY JON BLANKENSHIP

University Relations Director of Marketing

MCKENZIE (March 2) – Bethel University’s Division of Education exceeds state expectations in key metrics, according to the annual Educator Preparation Report Card (EPRC) released in February by the Tennessee State Board of Education (SBE).

Tennessee’s Education Preparation Providers (EPP) are reviewed and graded annually on how well their students are prepared to teach upon program completion.

“This recognition is a compilation of resilience, hard work, and determination over the past several years. The faculty and staff in the Division of Education have worked tirelessly to guarantee that the material covered in our courses meets the state’s requirements and to ensure that our students are fully prepared to enter a classroom and be successful,” said Division of Education Chair Dr. Morgan Butler.

Reporting areas are divided into domains, and within each domain are metrics. Bethel achieved its high marks in the candidate profile and employment domains of the report.

The employment domain “evaluates a provider’s performance in preparing educators to begin and remain teaching in Tennessee public schools,” according the SBE website.

Bethel scored above the state average in all three metrics of the domain: rate of first-year employment in Tennessee public schools (91 percent), second-year retention rate (98 percent) and third-year retention rate (86 percent).

The candidate profile domain, “evaluates the provider’s ability to recruit a strong, diverse cohort of candidates and prepare them to teach in the content areas of greatest need.”

The report found that 54 percent of Bethel students “reported having a racially or ethnically diverse background.” The state average is 16 percent. The report also highlighted Bethel’s cohort for its year-to-year gains in this metric.

In the Percentage of High-Demand Endorsements metric, the students also scored above the state’s average of 28 percent by registering 44 percent. This metric measures the percentage of cohort members who are training to enter the most in-demand fields like biology, chemistry, math and special education interventionist.

“With a current teacher shortage looming, we see an increase in students expressing interest in becoming teachers, especially in high-need areas like Special Education,” Butler said.

The EPRC is key to continued student success and Bethel’s partnership with the State of Tennessee.

“These rankings are crucial to the continuation of our licensure programs,” Butler said.

Visit Bethel University’s website to apply for admission or to learn more about the Division of Education.

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