Council criticizes Pitt

Trevor Monk, Advertising Director

University of Pittsburgh officials did not respond to information requests from the National Council on Teacher Quality and that response lack has council officials placing a critical advertisement.

Council Communications Director Laura Johnson said the group, based in Washington D.C., attempted to review 1,700 colleges and universities on four measures of quality. The council received mixed responses from the colleges and universities contacted. Johnson said they are working with Campus Media Group of Bloomington, Minn., to buy advertising from college newspapers at colleges and universities where there was no response to the information requests.

Campus Media Group workers contacted Pitt-Johnstown’s Advocate on Nov. 5 and asked to place an advertisement that read:

“You have the Right To Know. The National Council on Teacher Quality asked UPJ to participate in a review of the nation’s teacher preparation programs. UPJ refused. Help us do what your school would not.”

Johnson said that if officials at the nonresponsive colleges and universities  contacted did not comply with the information request the Council files for a Public and Open Records request.

Johnson said the council files for data release at the nonresponsive colleges and universities order state open records laws.

“We submitted an initial request for information to Pitt but did not receive a response.

“We then submitted an open records request but because of PA law, Pitt isn’t subject to open records.

“They informed us of that and we haven’t been in communication since,” said Johnson.

The council is to rate 700-800 institutions using 10 sources of data types, including lists of textbooks, reading lists and syllabi.