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State Program Approval Council (SPAC)

New Jersey's State Program Approval Council (SPAC) serves a vital role in establishing a rigorous, streamlined, and timely approval process for new and substantially-revised educator preparation programs. Proposed regulatory updates would modify the composition and role of the SPAC to include representatives from Certificate of Eligibility (alternate route) educator preparation programs and to:

  • Serve two-year, renewable terms;
  • Advise the Commissioner on matters pertaining to educator preparation quality;
  • Coordinate the peer review program approval process for initial and substantially revised programs;
  • Consider program information required for periodic review and recommend appropriate action regarding a program's status;  and
  • Make final recommendations for program approval to the Department.

SPAC Members:

The following 11 members, including six higher education representatives and five P-12 practitioners, were selected through a competitive application process to serve on the Council: 

  • Dr. Candace Burns, Dean, William Patterson University
  • Mr. Michael Dunlea, Teacher, Ocean Acres Elementary, Stafford Township, Manahawkin
  • Dr. Timothy Frederiks, Assistant Professor, Centenary College
  • Mr. James Gleason, Principal, Communications High School, Monmouth County Vocational, Wall Township
  • Dr. Claudine Keenan, Dean, Richard Stockton College
  • Dr. Tamara Lucas, Associate Dean, Montclair State University
  • Ms. Kristine Nazzal, Teacher, Union City High School, Union City
  • Dr. Anthony Pittman, Special Projects Leader, Kean University
  • Dr. Timothy Purnell, Superintendent, Somerville Public Schools
  • Dr. Joelle Tutela, Director of Teacher Education, Rutgers University-Newark
  • Dr. Amy Wollock, Associate Dean, Rutgers University