Surviving the OCT Site Visit and other Accreditation Stories
As many of you will remember, our program had to undergo a second year OCT accreditation this year. And since we also proposed a new program to prepare TECs for certification at the Junior-Intermediate level, we decided to go through both that accreditation and our two year review for the Primary-Junior program at the same time. This did seem like a good idea at the time!
In actual fact, it turned out to be a fairly painless process after all. In consultation with our few-but-dedicated faculty members, Dean Colleen Willard-Holt and Dawn Buzza spent many hours drafting the new J/I program components and making some key changes to improve the P/J program before shepherding them through the many levels of University approval. Finally, with Senate and Board of Governors approval, we were able to prepare the documentation required by OCT for both programs and submit it all to them before the Christmas break.
Then, in March the panel from OCT came for their site visit. A few brave alumni came to participate in these interviews, as did some PDS staff and principals, Board representatives and other stakeholders, and of course our own faculty members. We got amazing compliments on our exhibits room, which was our real opportunity to showcase what you and this year’s TECs have produced and created in learning your craft. At the end of the day (well, it was actually a few days!) the panel left us with a very positive feeling. We will soon have the final report, but the message was clear that the panel enjoyed hearing about our programs and overall, the accreditation process went well.