The University of the Virgin Islands School of Education is accredited by the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation (AAQEP), a national accrediting organization recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. The programs listed below have been awarded full accreditation by AAQEP through December 31, 2029. Full accreditation acknowledges that a program prepares effective educators who continue to grow as professionals and has demonstrated the commitment and capacity to maintain quality.
Founded in 2017, AAQEP is a membership association and quality assurance agency that provides accreditation services and formative support to all types of educator preparation providers. The organization promotes excellent, effective, and innovative educator preparation that is committed to evidence-based improvement in a collaborative professional environment. AAQEP is nationally recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Visit aaqep.org for more information.
AAQEP's Accreditation Statement
After reviewing the evidence collected through a process of self-study and peer review, the AAQEP Accreditation Commission held decision meetings November 29 and December 2 for the university’s programs for teacher education, school counseling, and educational leadership. The Commission determined that all four of AAQEP’s standards were met for all programs and granted them full accreditation.
In its rationales for the decisions, the Commission cited the programs’ attention to workforce needs through a “grow-your-own” approach and accessible, inclusive admission practices; significant investments in improvements to benefit candidates, such as a more robust data collection and analysis system; and close collaboration with stakeholders to strengthen the education system throughout the region.
The Commission also noted the programs’ adaptability and resilience amidst adversity. It affirmed the university’s “persistent and successful commitment to program quality in the context of numerous recent challenges” that include not only a dispersed geographic service area but also weather disasters and loss of key staff.
“Congratulations to the University of the Virgin Islands and to all of the faculty, staff, and stakeholders who have achieved their goal of national accreditation by AAQEP,” said AAQEP President and CEO Mark LaCelle-Peterson. “The School of Education addresses the educational workforce needs of its region with a comprehensive set of programs, providing low-barrier access to quality professional preparation guided by solid evidence.”
National accreditation assures the quality of professional preparation programs through a nongovernmental, nonregulatory process of self-study and peer review. This standards- and evidence-based process serves two broad aims: accountability and continuous improvement. The AAQEP model is also designed to honor local context and foster innovation and collaboration among institutions. AAQEP currently has members in 32 states and other jurisdictions with over 180 educator preparation providers participating in the accreditation system.
AAQEP Accreditation Standards
The Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation has four standards to grant accreditation as seen in the diagram below. Full description is provided by AAQEP in a full PDF printout.