Churches provide the place (school facilities), and the conference employs personnel and oversees program administration for all Adventist schools. So, what is the role and function of the North Pacific Union Conference Office of Education? Our NPUC team of educational leaders collaborates with conference and school leaders to ensure that:
- The clear purpose and foundational philosophy of Adventist education is focused on leading students to encounter Jesus and experience excellence in learning.
- We facilitate professional conferences, research perspectives and trends, facilitate strategic planning by schools and conferences and consult and counsel with various boards and committees to meet this sacred goal.
- Core curricular programs in Adventist schools have appropriate top-quality, faith-based products and resources to support learning excellence.
- We lead curriculum development committees and provide funding (grants and matching funds) for the adoption of learning materials that support instruction embedded in an Adventist Christian worldview.
- Coherent policies are developed and maintained to effectively guide the programs and operations of northwest Adventist schools.
- We lead in the research, development and adoption of policies that represent education best-practices and ensure alignment with denominational policies, as well as applicable state and national regulations.
- Competent personnel in Adventist schools (teachers and administrators) have access to effective professional development.
- We fund continuing education and convention attendance, and we connect with conference and school leaders in planning and implementing new professional growth initiatives.
- Consistent accountability for programs and personnel is administered to ensure quality Adventist education.
- We lead, facilitate and/or participate in school accreditation visits (program accountability). We manage all aspects of the denominational educator certification program (personnel accountability).
Adventist education is an essential partner in ministry to bring Faith, Hope and Wholeness to students and families of the North Pacific Union. Educators lead students to encounter Jesus, find evidence for faith, engage the distinctive Adventist worldview for life and experience excellence in learning.
- 6,608 students were reported in the opening K–12 enrollment for last school year (2021–2022), the highest student enrollment in twelve years (since 2009).
- 731 children on average over the last five years have been educated and cared for in 41 NPUC Early Childhood programs/centers.
- 524 educators have NAD Educator certificates issued/maintained by the NPUC Office of Education Registrar.
- 70% increase in funding for teacher affirmation and appreciation activities was provided during the last two pandemic school years.
- $1.12 million is provided in direct operating subsidies to senior academies and small remote schools annually in an NPUC-unique funding program.
- Provided guidance and support for the recognition of the first senior academy in the Alaska Conference, Amazing Grace Academy (K–12) in Palmer, Alaska.
- Collaborated with WWU in sending a joint academy-university marketing mailer to highlight the value of Adventist education to early teen (junior high) students.
- Led in the training and implementation of the new ENCOUNTER Bible course curriculum across all grades K–12.
- Chaired curriculum committees each summer writing and editing learning standards in various subject areas across the grades.
- Facilitated the adoption, training and implementation of a new annual student assessment program.
- Participated in the redevelopment and publication of NAD Handbooks for school boards, conference superintendents, principals and teacher certification.
- Collaborated in the strategic development and led early implementation steps for standards-referenced student learning and assessment.
- Supported a teacher coaching program and established curriculum coaching to assist in the implementation of a standards-referenced learning program.
- Reviewed, revised and updated the complete NPUC Education Code (updated for the first time in 30 years).
- Funded a major portion of the expenses for all available NPUC educators (450+) to attend the August 2018 NAD Teachers Convention in Chicago, Illinois, and a virtual denominational leadership conference with the Association of Seventh-day Adventist School Administrators (ASDASA) in February 2020.
- Introduced CoreStrengths assessment and training and other leadership programs for conference and school administrators.
- Increased coordination and leadership of an emerging collaboration of Early Childhood Education programs (quarterly newsletters, biennial workshops, consultations on governmental regulations, curriculum development, etc.).
- Hosted and facilitated Zoom leadership conversations as conferences and schools transitioned to virtual learning and responded to new pandemic protocols.
- Increased funding for annual teacher affirmation events during the pandemic and highlighted social/emotional health resources for students and teachers.
- Implemented a completely digital school accreditation protocol and reporting process across all schools.
- Led and facilitated in the transition and requisite training for a new regional accrediting partnership with The National Council for Private School Accreditation (NCPSA) and Middle States Association Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS).
- Significantly reduced interest and availability of qualified educators.
- Increasing government intrusion into operations via health/safety and employment regulations/statutes.
- Responding to a chaotic educational landscape that is requiring more of teachers' personal, social-emotional and spiritual reserves.
- Funding needs for programs and personnel that exceed projected income from regular operating sources.
- Clearly communicating the value proposition of Adventist education to Millennial and GenX parents.