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Indiana Tech education department accreditation denied; second program to be impacted

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) — For the second time in Indiana Tech’s history, the university has been denied accreditation for one of its programs.
“It’s a disappointment to us, it’s a disappointment to them,” Indiana Tech’s Brian Engelhart says.
Education students at Indiana Tech have some tough decisions.
The program has been operating under provisional accreditation from the state since it began about 10 years ago.
But it was just denied special accreditation from the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation.
“As a result, the Indiana Department of Education let us know that after this year they will no longer be able to license our education graduates to teach in the state of Indiana,” Engelhart confirms.
Indiana Tech education seniors will be allowed to graduate and be certified to teach.
But other students are left with three options: Change majors at Indiana Tech, transfer to another university, or wait to see whether Indiana Tech’s reapplication is approved.
One student said a freshman education major who’s his teammate on the lacrosse team is looking at his options.
“He was stuck with the position of either staying here playing the sport he likes or transferring and stop playing his sport, which he’s got a scholarship currently. Tough decision. It is. Very,” Louis Czech says.
Indiana Tech says its accreditation was denied because the education program didn’t have proper assessments in place for collecting data on current and graduated students.
School leaders were told it also needs to use that data to improve the program.
The denial means Indiana Tech will not be able to admit new education students and will not hold any education classes this fall.
“Certainly all of us here are disappointed with the decision but we believe in this program and we’re definitely going to reapply,” Engelhart says.
If this sounds familiar, Indiana Tech’s law school was denied accreditation in 2015 by the American Bar Association.
It was granted provisional accreditation the following year, but the school closed the law program a year later after only three of 12 students who sat for the bar exam, passed it.
The program also failed to attract enough new students to keep it open.
This fall, Indiana Tech will reapply with the state Department of Ed to allow the school to again graduate teaching students.
After that it will reapply to the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation for its seal of approval.
The education program has about 40 students.
We’re told no education faculty will lose their jobs while Indiana Tech reorganizes the department’s data-collection process and reapplies for accreditation this fall.

Corinne Rose

Corinne Rose is a reporter for WPTA.

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