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LEAP into teaching!

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  • provide opportunities for current or future lateral entries teachers to complete state-required courses leading to NC licensure

  • Complete a bachelor’s degree at any accredited college with a major in a content area taught in NC secondary schools, or acquire at least 24 hours of credit in that area, or pass the Praxis II content exam in the desired area
  • Have a desire to teach in NC middle or high schools

We want to assist current or future lateral entry teachers to acquire knowledge and skills necessary to effectively teach their content area to adolescents.

  • teach middle or high school students
  • follow state guidelines to obtain NC teacher licensure

Introducing the Belmont Abbey College Lateral Entry Alternative Preparation (LEAP) 

Group of children doing work at their school

Lateral entry allows qualified individuals to obtain a teaching position in North Carolina and begin teaching right away, while acquiring a professional educator’s license as they teach. The path from lateral entry to full licensure can take as long as 3 years to complete through a menu of state-required classes at a variety of colleges. With the Abbey LEAP pathway most lateral entry teachers may satisfy the state requirements with only 5 college classes completed during your first year of teaching. Or you may enter and complete LEAP while you apply for a position, or even while you’re just beginning to consider if the teaching profession is right for you.

Here’s how the process works. You may apply for a North Carolina temporary license to teach if you have 24 hours of college credit in a field taught in NC secondary schools* or if you pass an exam based on the content of the field you wish to teach. With the coursework of LEAP and completion of one successful year of teaching, most are eligible to be fully licensed to teach in North Carolina, with some other states recognizing the license as well.

Join us! You can make a world of difference in the lives of students while enjoying a satisfying and worthwhile career. Remember, teachers make all other professions possible!

* Middle School (grades 6-8): language arts, math, science, social studies
High school (grades 9-12): business, anthropology, biology, chemistry, earth science, economics, English, geography, history, math, physics, political science, comprehensive science, comprehensive social studies, sociology

The Abbey Difference:

More than a Career
At Belmont Abbey College we believe that being a teacher is not only a job, but a calling. Following the college’’s mission for the promotion of excellence, the Department of Education prepares its students for careers that focus on strengthening both mind and spirit as they share their love of learning in ways that glorify God.

A Close-Knit Program
One distinction of the Department of Education classes is size: students study in a close-knit cohort of no more than 20 classmates. The merit of a highly-individualized environment can be recognized in the quality of learning and application of knowledge and skills..

Exceptional Faculty
Belmont Abbey College boasts an exceptional education faculty. Our instructors are expert advocates for quality K-12 education. Not only do they have extensive experience as classroom teachers as well as an individual area of educational expertise, they also present regularly at national education conferences and are strong contributors to the body of knowledge in the field. Some are respected educational authors. For example, our department chair, Dr. Sara Davis Powell, is the author of two popular college textbooks, both in the 3rd edition, published by Pearson: Your Introduction to Education and Introduction to Middle Level Education.

Federal and State Compliance 
The teacher education program at Belmont Abbey College is fully accredited through the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI).

The Sister Christine Beck Department of Education of Belmont Abbey College is in compliance with Section 207 of Title II of the Higher Education Act of the United States Department of Education. This act requires Institutions of Higher Education (IHE’s) to report to the federal and state governments as well as to the public. These reports and relevant data are available upon request from the Sister Christine Beck Department of Education Office.

LEAP Opportunities

LEAP includes 5 courses generally required for lateral entry teachers to pursue NC licensure. Students may take all  5 or only those needed to fulfill their individual state requirements for licensure.

Fall (Wednesday only 6:00-10:15 PM):

  • ED311 Introduction to Exceptional Adolescents
  • ED310 Educational Psychology and Development
  • ED400 Classroom Management

Spring (Wednesday only 6:00-10:15 PM for the first 8 weeks and 6:00-8:00 PM the second 8 weeks):

  • ED418 Literacy Across the Curriculum
  • ED415 Secondary Methods

Have questions? Contact our Department of Education Chair:

Dr. Sara Davis Powell – Chair and Professor of Education
B.S., Southern Nazarene University
M.A., University of Colorado- Denver
Ph.D., University of Colorado- Denver

Education Program Faculty

Dr. Amanda Kloo – Associate Professor of Education
B.A., Chatham College
M.A., Columbia University
Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh

Dr. Judith McDonald – Associate Professor of Education
B.S., University of West Virginia
M.Ed., University of North Carolina- Charlotte
Ph.D., University of North Carolina- Greensboro

Dr. Melinda Ratchford – Associate Professor of Education
B.S., Appalachian State University
M.S.L.S., University of North Carolina- Greensboro
Ed.S., Appalachian State University
Ed.D., University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill

Dr. Tara Galloway – Assistant Professor of Education
B.S., Pembroke State University
M.Ed., University of North Carolina- Charlotte
Ph.D., University of North Carolina- Charlotte

Dr. Lisa O’Neill – Assistant Professor of Education
B.S., Appalachian State University
M.Ed., University of North Carolina- Charlotte
Ed.D., Gardner-Webb University

Benette Sutton – Instructor of Education and Director of Student Teaching
B.A., Sacred Heart College
M.A., University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Dr. Laura Campbell – Director of Teacher Education, Charlotte Campus
B.S., Saint Thomas Aquinas College
M.Ed., University of South Florida-Fort Myers
Ed.S., Barry University-School of Education
Ed.D., Barry University

Julie Kohlbrenner – Lecturer of Education
B.A., University of Florida- Gainesville
M.Ed., University of Florida–Gainesville

Get Started today with our Center for Continuing & Professional Studies