Boyce College’s Teacher Education Program receives state certification
The Kentucky Education Professional Standards Board (EPSB) voted Aug. 20 to grant “provisional certification” to Boyce College’s Teacher Education Program. This represents a major step forward for one of the school’s fastest-growing degree offerings.
Graduates of the Teacher Education Program, whose degrees already meet Kentucky curricular requirements, will now be able to apply directly for a state teaching license. The certification goes into effect immediately. The provisional status represents a required three-year probationary period for schools on the path to full certification.
Boyce College is the undergraduate school of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
“Our Teacher Education Program is a natural extension of our mission to prepare young people for service in the church and in the world,” said R. Albert Mohler Jr., who is president of Southern Seminary. “The ministry of teaching is so central to Christianity that this program is one of the most exciting dimensions of the life of Boyce College. Everything we do is for the church and for the cause of the gospel, and this new certification will allow us to send Christian teachers, trained at Boyce College, into every level of educational and academic life in the United States. This will make a difference not only in the classroom, but in the hearts and minds of those who will sit in those classrooms.”
Boyce education Professor Melissa Tucker, who chairs the school’s teacher education program, says this new certification contributes the multifaceted way Boyce College seeks to prepare educators.
“We want to ensure that our students have a high-quality teacher preparation program, a biblical worldview, and are working in the public schools in order not to only provide children with a great elementary experience but also to reach those children for Christ,” she said in an interview shortly after the EPSB vote.
Now that Boyce received this certification, the Teacher Education Program includes three tracks among which students can choose. The first two are non-certified, with emphases on ESL and classical education respectively. The third is certified with an emphasis on teaching in public schools, either in Kentucky or elsewhere. The core educational curriculum for all three tracks meets state standards for education degrees.
“The Teacher Education Program has been one of the most energizing and successful degree programs at Boyce College in recent years and this important milestone underscores its quality,” said Matthew J. Hall, who is dean of Boyce College. “Our graduates have been the most vivid demonstration, with a 100 percent job placement rate after graduation. Teachers are entrusted with an extraordinary stewardship from the Lord. For those given this high calling, there is no better place for preparation.”
Tucker contends that Boyce College’s TEP degree is now set up to meet the diverse needs of the growing number of students enrolled in it.
“We know that we have students who want to reach children all over the world, and want to teach them with a biblical worldview,” said Tucker. “Whether a student wants to be non-certified with an ESL/ENL emphasis or a classical education emphasis or certified so they can go directly into the public school, Boyce TEP has our strong Bible classes and then adds on the strong education pedagogy our students are ready to go into the world.”
The three-year provisional certification does not guarantee full certification, but it is a significant step toward it. More information about the Teacher Education Program, as well as other degree programs at Boyce College, is available at boycecollege.com.