Hamline News

School of Education Secures National Credential for ESL Program


Hamline School of Education recently received national Special Program Accreditation (SPA) through the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages international association (TESOL) Licensure program based on the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) standards. 

Hamline’s ESL program, the only ESL licensure program in the state with TESOL accreditation, was recognized for our demonstrable statewide impact on student learning and our rigorous specialized preparation of educators seeking initial licensure.

The accreditation report states, “For the past five years of data, the mean candidate scores at Hamline University have been higher than scores of candidates from the rest of the state of Minnesota.”

The achievement was a group effort. Faculty and staff members involved in the project was led by English Learners in the Mainstream (ELM) Project director Amy Stolpestad and included faculty members Ann Mabbott, Julia Reimer, and Michelle E. Benegas.

“Our team rigorously attended to the feedback received in previous assessments and addressed it with superb data analysis and presentation for the review committee,” noted Mike Reynolds, Associate Dean of Graduate Programs.

The national designation is significant.

“Hamline’s ESL program is one of very few nationwide with this distinction,” says Marcela Kostihova, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts.

More than 840 educator preparation providers participate in the CAEP accreditation system. CAEP’s performance-based accreditation system ensures that teacher candidates are prepared to make a difference in P-12 student learning.