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Letter to the ODU Campus Community from President Broderick

Over the past few weeks, questions have been raised regarding the university's Center for Teacher Quality and Educational Leadership (CTQEL).

The CTQEL is a vital and integral part of ODU and its educational mission. It assists at-risk schools and school districts to create cultures of learning and well-being. The CTQEL has initiated partnerships with Halifax County to improve mathematics instruction; with Northampton County to develop assessment literacy; with Martinsville City to develop and test the ODU Schools for the Future; with Hampton City to bring research-based, powerful pedagogy into classrooms in meaningful ways; with Norfolk City to conduct a graduate course for 61 teachers to advance assessment for learning practice; and with Newport News City to fully implement the American School Counseling Association and Virginia School Counseling Association model. CTQEL's impact is felt on a daily basis across Virginia, and it is critical that its work and programs not be compromised.

In addition, the CTQEL receives appropriations from the Commonwealth of Virginia and, as such, this University owes a special diligence in monitoring this program and keeping faith with taxpayers of Virginia.

Last month, several media reports questioned the relationship of the CTQEL with Phillip A. Hamilton, Delegate from the 93rd District. When these issues were raised, I directed my staff to examine all aspects of the CTQEL. When necessary, I directed that counsel for the university be consulted. During that time, the university received two FOIA requests for documentation pertaining to this matter.

Following a full review of the facts, and consultation with legal counsel, I am today announcing the following:

1. ODU is releasing all documents listed in the FOIA requests;

2. ODU and Delegate Hamilton have mutually agreed to end his relationship with CTQEL.

3. The Dean of the Darden College of Education, William Graves, will assume oversight of the CTQEL and the university's Program for Research and Evaluation in Public Schools (PREPS); and

4. ODU will conduct an immediate review of all existing contracts and memoranda of understanding involving PREPS and the CTQEL.

It is my hope that these actions will restore public confidence in the operation of the CTQEL program.

This article was posted on: August 20, 2009

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