President’s Letter March 2020

NASASPS Quarterly, Volume 14
March 2020

Greetings NASASPS Members,

It has been a busy start to 2020 as we’ve seen an increased national focus on state authorization. A number of states have had busy legislative sessions and several of our members were selected for the SHEEO State Authorization Learning Community. NASASPS is monitoring possible information-sharing sessions, meeting opportunities and potential for states to receive access to additional resources. As we are invited to meetings, we are using that opportunity to raise awareness about the differences we see from state to state in terms of resources available, staffing capacity, areas of focus for each office and varying levels of authority. We look forward to sharing more information with members throughout the year, especially at our Annual Conference in New Orleans and the Fall Workshop for Regulators in Seattle.

NASASPS is also working on providing resources and being a thought leader in areas that greatly impact state authorization and regulation. Over the course of the past year, our Distance Education Best Practices Committee and the School Closures Committee have been working on developing resources and educational sessions to assist states with these issues. I’ve included updates from committee leadership below.

Distance Education Best Practices Committee – Chair, Dr. Michael Marion, Jr.

The Distance Education Committee has been hard at work researching and synthesizing best practices in the distance education sector. The team has focused on the foundations for student success in an online environment from the admissions process to the online learning support services offered. Faculty qualifications and curriculum standards were addressed as well. Finally, approaches to tracking students’ attendance and progress were considered. The resulting checklist of best practices compiled by the committee is intended as a resource for institutions delivering (or aspiring to deliver) online instruction as well as the regulatory bodies charged with overseeing them. The checklist is going through final reviews now and we look forward to sharing this resource with NASASPS members soon.

School Closure Committee – Chair, Kevin LaMountain, M.ED

The School Closure committee is currently formalizing a set of tools that will be available to NASASPS members by May, 2020. The tools are an amalgamation of insights gained from a number of resources states currently utilize and have found effective. Tools are focused on:

  1. Effective state statutes related to closures
  2. Records recovery/long term solutions (digital storage)
  3. Records partnerships
  4. Student Tuition Recovery Funds
    • Tuition repayment
    • Records retention
  5. Bonds

On behalf of the NASASPS Board, I would like to thank these committees for their hard work and I look forward to receiving more information in the coming months. We will be distributing a call for committee service shortly after the 2020 NASASPS Annual Conference. I would encourage you to consider volunteering for committee service so that NASASPS can continue to provide the resources and education that states need.

Best Regards,
Crystal Puderbaugh
NASASPS President