A report compiled by Judith Bondurant-Utz, professor of exceptional education, has been identified by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) as an exemplar for programs that were granted full accreditation by their appropriate specialized program associations. Her work has been posted as a model on the NCATE Web site.
Bondurant-Utz submitted the report last spring in preparation for the Board of Examiners visit in April. Program evaluators from the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) reviewed the early childhood special education master’s degree program to ensure that graduates have mastered standards set by NCATE and the CEC. The report, which details Bondurant-Utz’s meticulous course structure and rubrics, was approved without condition.
“When you are an exemplar, it is definitely a high-level reinforcement of your work,” she said. “It validates everything I’ve been working on. It makes you feel proud.”
Sharon Cramer, SUNY Distinguished Service Professor of exceptional education, assisted Bondurant-Utz during the entire reporting process. The longtime friends and colleagues have both served in various leadership capacities with the CEC since the 1980s, experiences which proved valuable when constructing the report.
“Through our involvement with the CEC, we have a thorough understanding of the reasoning behind certain questions and topics,” Cramer said. “The CEC is striving to make us reflective practitioners. This report is excellent example of that.”