Education

Education

I teach every day. I go in the classrooms. I am their coach and I am their helper. … If you are a teacher, then you are always a teacher.
Katie Guilbault Decker ’89
Principal, Hollingsworth STEAM, Walter Long STEAM and Walter Bracken STEAM academies, Las Vegas; Magnet Schools of America’s 2013 National Principal of the Year
  • About: Education
  • Meet the Faculty
  • Effectiveness
  • 3 Things: Education
  • Accreditation
  • Field Experience
  • Career Opportunities
  • Clubs & Organizations
  • THE SIENA EFFECT: Education

PREPARED. CONFIDENT. EMPLOYED. Those are some of the words our graduates use to describe their experience in the education program at Siena Heights University. We believe in experience. At both the undergraduate and graduate levels, students acquire significant hours of field experience. In fact, Siena’s program more than doubles the state requirement!

Our full-time faculty average more than 30 years of classroom experience. Additionally, students in our graduate programs bring their diversity of experience with them to class, providing an enriching learning environment.

 

 

 

FAST FACT: With a student-teacher satisfaction rate of more than 96 percent, our students graduate prepared for the head of the class. We continue to be a resource for them even after graduation.

The Division of Education is accredited by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council/Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation and has been approved by the Michigan Department of Education to serve as a preparation institution.

Teacher Education at SHU focuses on education in its broadest vision. We believe teaching is both an art and a science. Students are encouraged to explore various aspects of the teaching/learning process, in addition to the formal preparation required for teaching. 

Through rigorous academic study, clinical experience hours, and continuous reflection on one's evolving philosophy of education, the Siena Heights education student not only learns from those who have gone before, but creates imaginative and innovative learning activities that will inspire prospective students to wholeheartedly engage in the learning process.

At Siena Heights University, Teacher Education students choose from a variety of teachable majors and minors for either initial certification or additional endorsements. Siena Heights University has authorization from the Michigan Department of Education to recommend certification and/or additional endorsements in a variety of grade levels and content areas, including post-BA initial certification and degrees for Master of Arts.

Certifications

Approved Program Areas 

Major Endorsements Minors/Endorsements
  • Biology (secondary)
  • Chemistry (secondary)
  • Child Development
  • English (Secondary)
  • History
  • Integrated Science
  • Language Arts (elementary)
  • Mathematics
  • Music Education
  • Social Studies
  • Spanish
  • Special Education (K-12 Learning Disabilities or Cognitive Impairment endorsements)
  • Biology (secondary)
  • Chemistry (secondary)
  • Computer Information Systems (secondary)
  • English
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Physical Education (secondary)
  • Planned Program (elementary)
  • Spanish

Child Development
This is a program that prepares child care providers to work in centers, homes and preschool classrooms. Michigan teaching certification endorsement (ZS) is also available through the Child Development Program.

Click here for more details about a Certification in Child Development at Siena Heights University.

Click here for more details about Teacher Education Endorsements at Siena Heights University.

Associate Professor of Education and Coordinator of Special Education
Division of Education
Adrian
517-264-7899
Associate Professor of Education; Program Coordinator Elementary and Secondary Education
Division of Education
Adrian
517-264-7892
Assistant Professor of Education
Division of Education
517-264-7887
Associate Professor of Education, Coordinator of Language Arts Program
Division of Education
Adrian
517-264-7888
Assistant Professor of Education
Division of Education
517-264-7921

How Effective is Siena Heights’ Teacher Preparation Program?

Our Candidates know how to teach and know their content. At Siena Heights University, we believe educator preparation programs should be held to high standards.  Our teacher preparation program demonstrates that we prepare teachers who have a positive impact on children’s learning and development.  We collect and analyze performance-based data to help us understand the answers to questions such as:  What do our candidates know?  Do their students learn? Do their employers feel they are well prepared?  By analyzing data, we are able to document the effectiveness of our programs and continuously improve the way we prepare teachers to meet the needs of students.

Guiding these high standards for continuous improvement are the following eight (8) annual reporting measures for accreditation by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

1. Impact on P-12 Learning and Development

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE)’s surveys of cooperating teachers for all student teachers specifically asks this question: “During the experience, my K-12 school collaborated with the college/university’s preparation program to positively impact the learning and development of K-12 students in my classroom.”  Cooperating teachers indicate that indeed Siena Heights’ candidates positively impact the learning and development of their students.

Years

Cooperating Teacher (n)

Score of Strongly Agree

2015-18

16

100%


Completers’ P-12 Student Growth Data

As another measure of how EPP graduates are performing in their teaching assignments during their first three years in public schools, the EPP initiated a pilot study in 2017-18 to look more deeply at a sample of graduates’ actual student achievement data used in their evaluations.  The sample included elementary, middle/high school (secondary), and special education teachers. (See also indicators of teaching effectiveness below).

2016-17 Summary

Teacher, grade level

Student Growth Instrument

Results

4th grade

DRA (reading running record) Fall to Winter

   Fall average = 34.43, N=23
   Winter average = 37.78, N=18

NWEA Reading RIT

   Fall average = 198.4, N=24, target=198.2
   Winter average = 206.2, N=23, target=203.6

NWEA Math RIT

   Fall average = 206.9, N=23, target=201.9
   Winter average = 212.1, N=23, target=208.7

3rd grade

Fountas & Pinnell
Fall to Spring, N=19

   At grade level Fall: 12/19 (63%)
   At grade level Spring: 14/19 (74%)
   100% made growth; 78% made expected growth

MAP: Reading
2-5 RIT

   Fall mean = 198.1, N=20, Norm grade level
    mean = 198.2
   Spring mean = 210.4, N=19, Norm grade level
    mean = 205.9

2nd grade

Fountas & Pinnell
Fall to Spring, N=25

   Students at grade level expectation: 23/24 (95.8%)
   Students who made growth: 24/24 (100%)

Pearson Realize Diagnostic Test

   Fall average = 28.32, N=25
   Spring average = 51.12, N=24
   Students who made growth: 24/24 (100%)

Math
6th and 7th grades

NWEA Math RIT,
6th grade

   Fall average = 215.3, N=83, target=217.6
   Spring average = 222.0, N=87, target 225.3

MWEA Math RIT,
7th grade

   Fall average = 221.8, N=42, target=222.6
   Spring average = 227.5, N=44, target=228.6

High school special education

Teacher-created Pre/Post Test

   Pre-test average = 30%
   Post-test average = 70%

 

For the pilot study, five teachers who are graduates of Siena Heights University submitted student achievement data from their annual evaluation.  Regardless of their grade level (2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, 6th/7th grade, high school) or content area tested, every teacher recognized improved average scores on every student growth instrument.  As indicated in the table above, results generally exceeded the target outcome and/or grade level mean. Despite the small sample size, this growth reflects the teachers’ understanding of content, employment of effective teaching techniques, analysis of formal and informal assessment data, and attention to ongoing reflection and adjustment as practiced during their education preparation program.

Similar data will be collected and analyzed each year to monitor how graduates are impacting P-12 student learning. Within the next two years, participating teachers will be asked to survey their P-12 students to collect additional data on their impact.

2.  Indicators of Teaching Effectiveness

Siena Heights’ graduates in their first three years of teaching rate above the state average on teaching effectiveness. In the 2014-15 and 2015-16, 100% of the graduates were rated effective or highly effective. In 2016-17, 97% (34/35) graduates were rated effective or highly effective. (See also the above, case study of completer P-12 student growth data for teaching effectiveness.)

Year

Number

Effective or Highly Effective

Minimally Effective or Ineffective

2014-15

23

100% (23/23)

0

2015-16

33

100% (33/33)

0

2016-17

35

97% (34/35)

1

 

3.  Satisfaction of Employers

Potential employers of Siena Heights University candidates (building principals where our teacher candidates worked) along with the cooperating teachers for each teacher candidate, provide feedback to the Teacher Education Program on how our teacher candidates perform in 14 areas.  These components are part of what potential employers assess when hiring teachers. The table that follows shows the average score for each component based on a four-point scale with four being a strongly agree and one being a strongly disagree.  

Our teacher candidates show mastery in each of these components:

MDE Survey Data
2015-18

Cooperating Teacher

N= 32

   High Quality Learning Experiences

3.8

100

   Critical Thinking

3.7

100

   Connecting Real World Programs & Local/           Global Issues

3.7

0.96

   Addressing the Needs of Special Populations

3.9

100

   Organizing the Learning Environment

3.7

0.98

   Using technology to Maximize Student               Learning

3.8

100

   Effective use of Assessments & Data

3.8

100

   Field Experience

N/A

N/A

   Laws, Policies, State Testing

N/A

N/A

   PK-12 School & University Partnership

3.9

0.99

 

Based on the Michigan Department of Education survey responses, Cooperating Teachers indicate 96-100% efficiency in candidate quality.

Siena Heights University will also be participating in the upcoming MACTE statewide principal survey to collect additional data. Survey results will be ready within one-two years.

4.  Satisfaction of Completers

Michigan Department of Education (MDE) surveys graduates one year after graduation. The surveys of Siena Heights’ graduates one-year out, indicate very high levels of satisfaction with their preparation to be successful and effective teachers averaging 97-100% efficacy.

Efficacy Scores (percent) by Strand from MDE Year-Out Surveys

MDE Survey Data

(2015-18)

One-Year Out

N=6

   High Quality Learning Experiences

3.7

100

   Critical Thinking

3.7

100

   Connecting Real World Programs & Local/
   Global Issues

3.5

100

   Addressing the Needs of Special Populations

3.8

100

   Organizing the Learning Environment

3.7

100

   Using technology to Maximize
   Student Learning

3.6

100

   Effective use of Assessments & Data

3.6

100

   Field Experience

3.8

100

   Laws, Policies, State Testing

N/A

N/A

   PK-12 School & University Partnership

3.7

0.97

 

While Siena Heights University is both small and produces a small number of teachers comparative to many of the other Education Preparation Programs in the state, year-out survey data confirms that graduates are consistently satisfied with their education program and feel prepared for their job search and classroom responsibilities.  With a total of six survey respondents from the 2015-16, 2016-17, and 2017-18 school years, 100% of the respondents indicated they either strongly agreed or somewhat agreed with all 38 of the questions/prompts. 

SHU Division of Education faculty analyzes the year-out survey data as well as data from teacher candidates, candidate supervisors, cooperating teachers, and course evaluations each year to inform and revise the education program.  This analysis of assessment data, reflection, and commitment to continuous improvement both strengthens the EPP and serves as a model of good practice for SHU teacher candidates.

5.  Completer/Graduation Rates

The following table shows Program Completers by Program Area (from Title II annual reports of teachers prepared by subject areas. In some years, counts include individuals who completed programs in more than one area.)

   Program Area

2015-16

2016-17

2017-18

   Elementary Education

15

5

11

   Early Childhood Education

--

2

4

   Special Education

--

5

4

   Physical Education

--

1

2

   Music Education

--

2

1

   English

--

1

--

   Social Studies

3

1

1

   Mathematics

1

--

1

   English/Language Arts

--

--

3

   Biology

--

--

---

   Chemistry

--

--

---

 

6.  Ability of Completers to Meet Licensing (Certification) and Any Additional State Requirements

Our Candidates know their contentThe average GPA of Completers:

Year

Average GPA

n= number

2015-16

3.70

19

2016-17

3.85

9

2017-18

3.65

16

 

Siena Heights University candidates average consistently above the required 3.0 GPA. Over a three-year period, candidates are averaging between a 3.65-3.85 by graduation.

Michigan Test for Teacher Certification, Aug. 2014-July 2017

Over the three-year period (2014-17), the overall passage rate for all test-takers on the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification was 80.4%.  The following table breaks this down by program/test areas.
** Number of test takers < 5

   Program

N

SHU Pass Rate (%)

State Pass Rate (%)

   English (002)

5

80

90.9

   History (009)

**

**

**

   Chemistry (018)

**

**

**

   Mathematics (Sec) (022)

**

**

**

   Spanish (028)

**

**

**

   Physical Education (044)

**

**

**

   School Counselor (051)

**

**

**

   Cognitive Impairment (056)

10

90

89.4

   Learning Disabilities (063)

8

100

94.6

   Social Studies (Sec) (084)

6

33.3

89.9

   Mathematics (Elementary) (089)

**

**

**

   Language Arts (Elementary) (090)

**

**

**

   Reading Specialist (092)

**

**

**

   Music Education (099)

**

**

**

   Elementary Education (103)

31

80.6

92

   Social Studies (Elementary) (105)

**

**

**

   Early Childhood Education
   (General and Special Education) (106)

8

87.5

82.4

 

7.  Ability of Completers to be Hired in Education Positions for Which They Have Prepared

For employed graduates completing the 2015-18 Year Out Surveys for the Michigan Department of Education, indicated that the program prepared them well for the teaching job market, supported them in their job search, the university holds a positive reputation among prospective employers, and the university provided good advice on job placement opportunities.  Siena Heights also prepares teachers in high needs fields (special education, early childhood education, mathematics, science, and reading) so completers have excellent job prospects upon graduation.

Year-Out Survey Categories:

The program prepared them well for the teaching job market, supported them in their job search, holds a positive reputation among prospective employers, and provided good advice on job placement opportunities

Academic Year

% Efficacy

(on the survey questions)

 

2015-16

100%

2016-17

100%

2017-18

100%

 

8.  Student Loan Default Rates and Other Consumer Information

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) is the primary federal entity for collecting and analyzing data related to education in the U.S. and other nations. NCES is located within the U.S. Department of Education and the Institute of Education Sciences. NCES fulfills a Congressional mandate to collect, collate, analyze, and report complete statistics on the condition of American education; conduct and publish reports; and review and report on education activities internationally.”

 

#1. Nationally accredited undergraduate and graduate level programs

#2. A total of 180 years of combined faculty experience in Pre-K-20 education

#3. Hands-on minds-on courses to get experience doing: We model good practice

Siena Heights University’s Teacher Education Program was granted Accreditation by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) for a period of seven years, from May 3, 2013 to May 3, 2020. This accreditation certifies that the forenamed professional education program has provided evidence that the program adheres to TEAC’s quality principles.

For a Summary of the Case, click here.

Learn more about the Field Experience requirement at Siena Heights.

FIELD EXPERIENCE: THEORY INTO PRACTICE

We believe the more experience students have, the greater their chance of success. Field experience gives students the opportunity to apply theory into practice through a variety of placements. Siena Heights students will log more than 250 clock hours of field experience during their program of study.

The Michigan Department of Education requires a minimum of 100 clock hours of field experience prior to the student teaching placement. It is the belief of Siena’s Teacher Education Program that the more experience students have prior to student teaching, the greater their chances of a successful student teaching placement.

For more details about the field experience requirements, click here.

Learn about the career opportunities you can have with a degree in Education.

Students who graduate from the Teacher Education Program at Siena Heights University apply for an initial teaching certificate from the State of Michigan. They are prepared to seek employment as teachers in either elementary or secondary schools.

Other related careers include jobs in early childhood education centers, intermediate school districts, state departments of education, professional education associations, education publishing and the educational divisions of industry. Further education could prepare students for professions such as school administrators, librarians, guidance counselors and school psychologists.

The job market for teacher in Michigan is tight, but there are some shortages present. Students’ chances for full-time employment can be increased if they are able to move within Michigan or into states which have shortages. Careful selection of majors, minors and endorsement areas can also increase students’ chances for full-time employment.

Students at Siena Heights University can continue their education to the master’s level without attending another university. Siena Heights University offers graduate programs in early childhood, education and special education. Planned programs are available for candidates already holding bachelor’s degrees. These programs provide for teacher certificate renewal, upgrade, endorsementand work toward the Master of Arts degree.

Learn more about the T.E.A.C.H. organization(Teacher Education Association for Community Help).

T.E.A.C.H.

Mission Statement

The Teacher Education Association for Community Help (T.E.A.C.H.) is an organization dedicated to reach out and help learners of the community who are in need, by providing supplies, support, and resources to enhance one’s education.

Statement of Eligibility

Those who are eligible:

  • Must maintain an overall GPA of 2.5
  • Must have three credits toward either educational or child development major at Siena Heights

All SHU students who are working toward an Education or Child Development major/minor without regard to race, religious creed, gender, national origin, differing abilities, or sexual orientation are eligible to participate in T.E.A.C.H.

Membership Fees

An annual fee of $5 is required while an active member of T.E.A.C.H.


In December 2016, SHU Professor Tyler George's Social Studies Teacher Education class took part in an innovative learning experience called Twitter Chat. Check out our Siena in 60 Seconds feature detailing this meeting of education and technology. Created by SHU students, Becca Penny and Matt Leppek.


Katie Guilbault Decker 

Major: Teacher Education

What Katie is Doing: Award-Winning Principal of the Walter Bracken STEAM Academy, Las Vegas, Nev.

Katie Guilbault Decker has made learning fun again for students, teachers and parents at the Walter Bracken STEAM Academy in urban Las Vegas. As the recipient of the 2013 Magnet Schools of America Principal of the Year Award, Decker has transformed an underperforming, underprivileged school into one of the best in the state of Nevada.

Decker, who spent the previous 11 years as a teacher and an assistant principal in the Las Vegas area, saw an opportunity to improve the failing school. She made the 
shift to more of a science, technology, arts, engineering and mathematics (STEAM) curriculum. The results have been nothing short of remarkable. Bracken is now one of the top schools in the state. It received High Achievement status from the state of Nevada for Adequate Yearly Progress and ranked among the top 5 percent of all schools in the district.

She said Siena Heights—especially the late Sister Eileen Rice—helped in-still those teaching values in her.

“I adored (Sister Eileen). I would love to be even half of what she was. We used to joke that she never slept.She was probably one of the bigger influential people in my life.”


“We’re showing our community what a school can be.”



 

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