Bachelor of Arts in Childhood Education

The B.A. in Childhood Education prepares students for professional work with children. Course and practicum experiences provide knowledge of the theories, research, standards, and practices that affect schools and informal educational settings. Learning is studied as a fundamental human endeavor involving culture and context, imagination and interaction, reason and reaction. Careful attention is given to the growth of children as individuals whose perceptions, interests, joys, strengths and challenges are formed within a community and through meaningful engagement with others. JSC's Childhood Education majors are prepared to help children succeed in school and beyond by becoming knowledgeable professionals who are willing to advocate for excellence and equity.

Theoretical Framework & Learning Pursuits

Students in Education Department programs gain both an understanding of the discipline of education and a practical grasp of effective professional practice. Connecting these two realms provides a foundation for achieving the department's objectives for each student, including the use of academic study in the formation of content-specific professional knowledge, the use of action research to design deliberative pedagogical strategies, the use of critical theory to confidently serve as a progressive colleague and advocate, and the use of transformative learning in the pursuit of continuous personal growth. In order to support learning along these four strands, the program engages students in, and teaches them to use, related inquiry processes. Taken together, the four strands of learning and inquiry constitute a fifth, systemic approach of intentional practice. The program theme is Teach with Intention. Students who successfully complete an Education Department program will,

  1. Use academic study to examine content area knowledge including established constructs, historical developments, common misconceptions, enduring questions, and cross-disciplinary connections;
  2. Use action research to design and assess original, inclusive, and engaging learning experiences that are meaningful and effective;
  3. Use critical analysis grounded in social, political, ethical, and leadership perspectives to reframe educational endeavors toward more vibrant and just ends;
  4. Use self-study grounded in an understanding of diverse world-views to rethink long-standing, conventional notions toward an open-minded, strength-based perspective.

Teacher Education Program in Elementary Education

Working as a teacher in a public school in Vermont requires a Level I Educator's License with an endorsement in a specific discipline at a designated level. The license is issued by the VT Department of Education (VT DOE) to candidates who successfully complete a Teacher Education Program and are recommended by their institution. Students seeking to become a candidate for a Vermont Educator's License with an endorsement in Elementary Education (K-6) through JSC must apply to enter the Teacher Education Program in Elementary Education (TE-ELED). Declaring a major in Childhood Education is not the same as entering the TE-ELED program. (See below for application information.)

Academic Requirements

Students accepting into the TE-ELED Program complete three sets of academic requirements:

1. Liberal Arts & Science Background Components for TE-ELED

TE-ELED students must demonstrate competence in nine Components of a Liberal Arts & Science Background for ELED candidates: composition, quantitative skills, literature, historical thinking & citizenship, artistic expression, scientific thinking, diversity studies, identity studies, and interdisciplinary studies. This requirement can be satisfied by selecting specific General Education courses. A list of suggested courses is available: Consult your advisor for recommendations. Contact the ELED Program Director to discuss equivalencies.

2. Education Coursework

TE-ELED students declare Childhood Education as their primary major and complete all requirements for the B.A., such as the general education and graduation requirements, with a 3.0 cumulative GPA or better. TE-ELED students also complete a set of courses designed to prepare them to satisfy the Elementary Education endorsement.

3. Second Major or Concentration

With the assistance of their advisor and the ELED Program Director, TE-ELED students select a second major or 30-credit concentration in an approved liberal arts or science field of study: Major in Liberal Arts; major or a concentration in Anthropology/Sociology, Art, Biology, English, Environmental Science, Health Science, History, Math, Music, Political Science, Psychology, Theater & Drama.

Preparation, Application, and Advancement

Students aspiring to prepare for, apply to, and complete the Teacher Education Program in Elementary Education should obtain the Teacher Education Handbook from the Education Department. A few of the preparation steps are listed below, others are detailed in the handbook.

  1. Students should work with their advisor and the Program Director for ELED or ELED/EDP to construct a Course Sequence covering all requirements. Select General Education courses that satisfy the Liberal Arts and Science Background requirements for the ELED program. Contact the ELED Program Director to discuss course equivalents, substitutions, or waivers.
  2. Students transferring credits from other institutions (including CCV, other VSC colleges, or other institutions) must meet with the ELED Program Director for a Transcript Review to determine which courses satisfy which requirements, if any.
  3. Students must apply to enter the ELED program: Acceptance into the college or declaring a major or beginning coursework in a program of study does not constitute entry into a Teacher Education Program. Enroll in the beginning coursework for the program (EDU-2360 or EDU-2365) and attend EDU-TEW1, Teacher Education Workshop I, to learn about the Teacher Education Program application process.
  4. Full acceptance into the ELED program includes satisfaction of the Vermont Educator Testing Requirements: Students must submit passing scores on the PRAXIS I examinations, the SAT examination, the ACT examination, or the GRE examination. For complete information, see http://education.vermont.gov/new/html/licensing/testing.html.
  5. Students in the TE-ELED program complete numerous fieldwork assignments. Students are expected to provide time in their weekly schedule to accomplish fieldwork assignments during typical public school hours (M-F, 7:00 am-3:30 pm) and to arrange their own transportation to fieldwork sites.
  6. Advancement through the program requires attendance at five Teacher Education Workshops (EDU-TEW1 through EDU-TEW5). These are one-time meetings held each semester in multiple sections: See the Course Sequence Plans in the Teacher Education Handbook for details. Each workshop provides guidance for completing the next set of requirements for the program. Those who do not meet the benchmark requirements will not be permitted to proceed in the program.
  7. Students must earn a B- or better in all endorsement-specific courses. Student must demonstrate a 3.0 cumulative GPA, a 3.0 GPA in the major, and pass the PRAXIS II examination before applying for the Teaching Internship (e.g. Student Teaching).
  8. Students will participate in three interviews spread throughout the program: Entry Interview, Midway Interview, and Exit Interview. Expect these to be one hour, on campus.
  9. Earning a Recommendation for Licensure from JSC requires a student to meet all applicable requirements for licensure in place at the time of the recommendation. If the requirements for licensure established by the VT Standards Board for Professional Educators, the VT Department of Education, or the U.S. Department of Education change over the span of a student's enrollment in a TE program, the student must consult with his/her TE Program Director to determine if the changes apply and, if so, how best to meet the new requirements.

The Level I Licensure Portfolio

Students seeking a Recommendation for Licensure from JSC are required to submit a complete Level I Portfolio, ready for scoring, by the due date established within the Teaching Internship semester.

The portfolio is a collection of specific assignments that demonstrate a candidate's knowledge, skill, and disposition. It documents the candidate's competence in meeting Vermont's Five Standards for Professional Educators, the Knowledge & Performance Standards for his/her endorsement area, and the Code of Professional Ethics for VT Educators. The portfolio must be constructed in accordance with the current guidelines established by the Vermont Standards Board for Professional Educators. Students should read the JSC Portfolio Handbook for details and policies.

The portfolio is an assessment of a candidate's readiness to apply for the Level I License. Portfolios must achieve passing scores from two reviewers; one from a faculty member and one from the JSC Board of Reviewers. A student whose portfolio does not achieve two passing reviews will not earn a Recommendation for Licensure. In some cases, reviewers may request revisions: Portfolios that do not pass after the second revision will be marked as Not Pass. While, typically, the review process requires a few weeks, students should expect the review process to last many months or a year if the portfolio requires revision. Students may be required to enroll in a credit-bearing tutorial session to complete or revise a portfolio.

Students may apply for a limited extension for submission of a portfolio due to unexpected circumstances. Requests must be made during the Student Teaching semester. Portfolios submitted after the Student Teaching semester or the extension due date, or submitted portfolios that do not meet guidelines will not be accepted for review. In such cases, a student will not earn a Recommendation for Licensure from JSC.

Accreditation

The Teacher Education Programs at JSC are accredited through the Vermont Standards Board for Professional Educators. The accreditation process assures that candidates who are recommended for licensure meet all state standards for the license and the endorsement. Vermont has established agreements to have educators' licenses recognized in over 40 other states, districts, and territories through association with NASDTEC.