Central Coast educators may soon have access to a master’s degree program through a partnership with the Orcutt Union School District.
Thousand Oaks-based California Lutheran University is planning to launch a master’s degree program in educational leadership, offering classes at a new Central Coast Learning Center located in the Orcutt district’s administrative office at 500 Dyer St.
The classes, which start in May, will mark the first time the university has offered courses north of Ventura County.
The approval of the Western Association of Schools & Colleges is pending.
“It’s very exciting,” said Victoria Kelly, who directs the new program. “The program is geared for the working professional.”
Interested educators can apply now to enroll in the accelerated one-year program, where they will spend 60 percent of time in face-to-face classes and 40 percent completing lessons online, Kelly said.
The program will train students to serve as assistant principals, principals, directors, assistant superintendents and superintendents, as well as in leadership positions in teaching, higher education and nonprofit administration.
Four 11-week terms make up the program, and students will attend Friday night and Saturday day classes four weekends out of each term.
Holly Edds, Orcutt assistant superintendent of educational services, said the district is offering up space in its instructional media center (Building H) to bolster a partnership that’s been a few months in the making.
“We’re hoping it’s a benefit for our staff,” Edds said, adding that educators hoping to receive administrative training typically had to travel to Santa Barbara or San Luis Obispo for classes. “It’s just another option.”
The educational leadership master’s program is the same one offered at the university’s main campus, combining instruction with practical field work experience and research.
Between 15 and 18 students can enroll, Kelly said, and the price is competitive with similar programs, with financial assistance available.
She said the ongoing partnership with Orcutt could grow to include a doctorate program — like the one at the main campus — but that will depend on the amount of interest.
“We really do see the need for working together,” Kelly said of partnering with Orcutt.
For more information or to enroll, call Kelly at 938-8931 or admission counselor Andrea Kendrick at 493-3124.
Those interested also can visit www.callutheran.edu/education/orcutt/.