The School of Education difference
Seattle Pacific was founded more than 125 years ago, and the University has been preparing some of the most sought-after educators in the region for more than 90 years. Today, entrance to School of Education graduate programs is highly competitive. Faculty members — each teaching his or her own courses and each holding a doctorate — have worked to develop rigorous programs of quality.
The School of Education at Seattle Pacific University offers more than a dozen graduate programs. You can choose from three doctoral programs, seven master’s degree programs, and five certification programs, all of which focus on developing competence, character, leadership, and service in educators. While many students train to become teachers, others prepare for roles as school counselors, principals, superintendents, district office personnel, or professors in higher education. SPU's reputation in P–12 education in Washington and across the country is strong, and students who complete our graduate degree and certificate programs enjoy a higher rate of employment than the state’s average.
Why Seattle Pacific for your Superintendent Certification?
Based on National Education Leadership Preparation (NELP) standards, the Superintendent Certification program at SPU emphasizes the knowledge and skills you will need for district-level administrative assignments in the P–12 school setting, such as superintendent, deputy superintendent, associate and assistant superintendent, director, and similar roles. The Superintendent Certification program leads to a Washington administrator's certificate, and seasoned professionals — using their cumulative experience spanning a variety of educational levels and positions — get you there. In addition, adjunct senior-level administrators complement the regular faculty and provide contemporary relevance to the program.
Earn the Superintendent Certification in this stand-alone program or with the Doctor of Education (EdD) degree by selecting the Executive Leadership specialization option when applying, in which you can receive your EdD and superintendent certification in just three years — instead of the typical four to five years.
- Accomplished faculty
Expert, caring faculty have a desire to help students succeed. Faculty are known for mentoring their students during and following their educational programs. These professors model lifelong learning through scholarly activities of their own, publishing frequently, and presenting at professional conferences.
- AACU membership
Seattle Pacific is a member of the Association of American Colleges and Universities and of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education. SPU certification programs are approved by the Washington state Professional Educator Standards Board. The School of Education is also a member of the Association of Independent Liberal Arts Colleges for Teacher Education, and has a chapter, Sigma Phi Upsilon, of Chi Sigma Iota, an international honor society that values academic and professional excellence in counseling.
- Deep character emphasis
Built on an character education foundation, the graduate programs at SPU offer first-class education through the lens of Christian faith and values. Students take ethics courses, and character issues are integrated throughout the curriculum.
- Flexible format
Designed for working professionals, coursework and field experiences in the Superintendent Certification program are based on a convenient, two-year cohort model that allows you to attend class while continuing your work responsibilities.
- Connected alumni
School of Education graduates move on to purposeful careers in schools and district-level leadership throughout the country. When you obtain a graduate degree from SPU’s School of Education, you join a community of alumni who stay connected.
EdD + Superintendent Certification—Executive Leadership Specialization
You can earn your EdD and Superintendent Certification at SPU in just three years — instead of the typical four to five years. This option combines best leadership practices with effective use of educational policy and research.
While both the Superintendent Certification program and the School Executive Leadership program prepare educational leaders, only the Superintendent Certification program leads to a Washington administrator's certificate. Those students who hold a prerequisite teacher, ESA, CTE or principal certificate should enroll in the Superintendent Certification program to be eligible for the Washington Initial Superintendent Certificate. Students who do not hold a teaching certificate should enroll in the School Executive Leadership program. Applicants must have a minimum of two years of building or district level administrative experience prior to acceptance into the program.
"When you come out of SPU, you know who you are as a leader. You have had to wrestle not only with the technical subjects of running a district, but the moral and ethical issues as well. You are challenged to put your own ego on the shelf and lead with a servant's heart and always mindful of your leadership legacy."
Sandy completed the superintendent certification in 2014 and has since served in Assistant Superintendent positions in WA state. Currently, she serves as interim superintendent in Port Townsend.