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State of Illinois approves new early childhood education program at Concordia-Chicago


Concordia University Chicago’s baccalaureate-level degree in early childhood education with an ESL endorsement has been granted approval by the State Educator Preparation and Licensure Board. The approval allows the University to continue preparing students for their bachelor’s degrees and licensure in this growing field. The state of Illinois had set a deadline of Sept. 1, 2018 for all early childhood educator-preparation programs to meet new licensure requirements.

Melissa Smith, Concordia-Chicago assistant professor of early childhood education, was the primary author of the program, which prepares students to teach children from birth to second grade. The new standards for early childhood teachers include adding geography, civics and economics to their training, and stronger content preparation in math, social studies, science and literacy.

“The tradition continues—Concordia University Chicago is one of the finest university-based early childhood programs in the Midwest,” said Dr. Kevin Brandon, dean of the College of Education. “The talented men and women who serve here at CUC help to prepare the best and brightest graduates in the field of education.”

The College of Education at Concordia University Chicago offers highly regarded programs leading to teacher licensure and is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (formerly NCATE) and the Illinois State Board of Education. CUC’s education programs prepare teachers, school leaders, school counselors and directors of Christian education (DCE) at the graduate and undergraduate levels. More than 3,000 Chicago-area teachers and administrators seeking their graduate education degrees enroll each year.