REINHARDT COLLEGE AND CLARK ATLANTA UNIVERSITY ANNOUNCE EDUCATIONAL PARTNERSHIP
Clark Atlanta University (CAU) and Reinhardt College, two United Methodist-affiliated institutions in the metro Atlanta area, have created a collaborative partnership between their Schools of Education.
Reinhardt Academic Vice President Dr. B. Lee Cooper said that under the partnership, Reinhardt students majoring in early childhood, middle grades, or physical education will receive their diplomas from Reinhardt, while Clark Atlanta will oversee the student teaching process and recommend graduates for state teaching certification. The partnership will also facilitate faculty and student exchanges, joint faculty research and opportunities for culturally diverse experiences.
Cooper said the mutually beneficial learning arrangement emerged from discussions between Dr. Trevor A. Turner, CAU education professor and former CAU School of Education dean, and Dr. R. Donald Hardy, former Reinhardt Price School of Education dean, now the site director for graduate programs in Atlanta, Ga., for Troy State University.
Teaching faculty of both institutions affirmed the idea on April 26, 2001, and Turner and Associate Dean of Education Dr. Charlotta Clark spoke to Reinhardt's Board of Trustees on May 22, 2001. The partnership was finalized by both institutions on July 17, 2001.
Since that time, CAU has named Dr. Ernest J. Middleton as their new dean of the School of Education. "This is an exciting and unique collaboration between an urban, historically black university and a smaller, liberal arts college," Middleton said. "Our arrangement will open the door for other collaborations including seminars and classes toward the master's degree at Reinhardt's Main Campus."
Reinhardt's Interim President Charles E. Glassick, who took office on August 7, 2001, is also enthusiastic about the new arrangement.
"This partnership presents some interesting possibilities for both institutions," Glassick said. "It is an exciting academic win-win in terms of increased diversity, supportive instruction, certification for Reinhardt's education students, and the possible addition of Clark Atlanta's master's degree classes in our area in the years to come."
Reinhardt's Interim Dean of Education Dr. Robert Epling called the CAU-Reinhardt agreement "unique and exciting."
"While the arrangement will eventually encompass various cultural, educational, and social opportunities, the immediate impact for Reinhardt graduates is that they will be recommended for state teaching certification through Clark Atlanta. Such security is a tremendous benefit for Reinhardt students as our education school continues to prepare for Georgia Professional Standards Commission approval," Epling said.
Cooper said Clark Atlanta is an excellent partner for Reinhardt because of shared United Methodist roots, their success with the appropriate accrediting agencies, their compatible majors, their quality and quantity of faculty, and their diversity.
Turner described Clark Atlanta's enrollment as more than 5000 students majoring in a wide range of disciplines. Many are from the Southeast, but a significant number are from other countries and from larger metropolitan areas across the United States. Approximately 300 undergraduates and 300 graduate students are enrolled in the School of Education. Thirty-five full-time faculty and about 30 adjunct faculty teach education courses each term.
Clark Atlanta University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), and the School of Education is approved by National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). The institution's numerous education programs are approved by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GAPSC), the accreditation and teacher certification agency of the state of Georgia. The GAPSC requires a new education school to partner with an accredited institution until the new program earns its own GAPSC approval. Since 1998, Brenau University had provided this oversight for Reinhardt's education program, but that contract ended May 30, 2001.
"Brenau has been a wonderful partner," Joanna Mann, Reinhardt's Brenau coordinator, said. "They generously shared their expertise, and the relationship has been very beneficial for everyone."
Dr. Bill Ware, dean of Brenau University's School of Education and Human Development, echoed these thoughts. "It was a positive, cooperative relationship for both institutions, and we wish them well in their new agreement," he said. Brenau will continue to offer their master's of education courses at Reinhardt's Waleska campus.
Tammy Peters, Reinhardt Class of 2001, said the shared partnership required by the GAPSC creates a very supportive arrangement for teachers attending new education schools. "I felt like I had a team working for me, instead of just one school," she said.
Wendy Pharr, a senior education major from Waleska, Ga., and president of the Reinhardt Organization of Student Educators, ROSE, helped make the introductory presentation at Clark Atlanta and said her fellow education majors are very positive about the new agreement. "We are real excited about the partnership with Clark Atlanta," she said. "They have some of the nicest professors, and everyone is real enthusiastic about it."
For more information on Reinhardt's education programs, please contact the Reinhardt admissions office at 770-720-5526.