Lamar University principal, superintendent programs receive national recognition

In Honor and Memory of Dr. Donna Azodi

The Lamar University principal and superintendent programs — master’s and post-graduate programs in the College of Education and Human Development — recently received national recognition through the Specialized Association Program, a rigorous program that requires data collection for evidence of a high rate of student success, as well as faculty collaboratively using the data for continuous program improvement, according to Dr. Donna Fong, director of accreditation in the Department of Educational Leadership.

The data, Fong said, are based on key assessments completed by students throughout the program. These assessments are aligned with the National Policy Board for Educational Administration’s National Educational Leadership Preparation standards.

“The criteria include alignment of curriculum and instruction to the NELP stands and data-based evidence that students are successful in applying knowledge and skills associated with the NELP standards,” she said. “These standards are the nationally accepted standards for best practices for school administrators. Faculty in the principal and superintendent programs are collaboratively involved in creating courses that are rigorous, aligned with NELP standards and include assessments that clearly measure appropriate components of these standards.” Principal/Superintendent Program

For national recognition, an in-depth report that articulates all measures of students’ success in applying NELP standards is compiled and provided to our national accrediting agency. The report is peer-reviewed to determine whether the program meets the criteria for national recognition.

Educator Preparation Programs for educational administrators can apply for national recognition every three years. The university has attained this status for the last four consecutive application rotations, with the most recent recognition granted in August of 2022, Fong said, noting that the standards categories include the following: missions, vision and improvement; ethics and professional norms; equity, inclusiveness and cultural responsiveness; learning and instruction; community and external leadership; operations and management; building professional capacity; and internship. 

“We are all very excited to get the news. Though we have obtained this distinction several times, it’s always a rigorous and challenging process, so we feel very honored,” the director said. “This recognition is important to our programs. It distinguishes Lamar University’s principal and superintendent programs from others. Students can be proud of completing a program that has this distinction. In addition, prospective students can enter our program with confidence that they will receive preparation of the highest level.”

Learn more about the principal and superintendent programs by visiting the Department of Educational Leadership’s website.