The Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education at Elon University is a national authority on the preparation of equity-minded leaders in the fields of education, physical activity and wellness who enhance the learning and lives of children and adults. Accomplished teacher-scholars with decades of collective professional experience instruct nearly 300 undergraduates majoring in early childhood education, elementary education, middle grades education, outdoor leadership & education, physical education & health, science education, or special education. The school also offers programs for earning a Master of Education or Master of Arts in Higher Education.
Named for a distinguished Elon University alumna and former public school teacher, the Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education hosts the Elon Teaching Fellows Program, a model for the preparation of teaching leaders and scholars who contribute significantly to the quality of birth-12 education and who are influential in decision-making on the local, state, national and international levels. Through an increasingly complex four-year undergraduate experience, the Fellows program challenges future teachers to think critically and embrace diversity, lead within and beyond the classroom, and participate meaningfully in a global society.
In addition to traditional study abroad offerings led by Elon faculty, the Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education runs a center at the University of Otago in New Zealand, allowing for a partnership with the College of Education at the University of Otago and Arcadia University for a semester-long study abroad program tailored for teacher education majors.
Initial licensure programs in the Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education are accredited under the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation.
The School of Education, first established in 2000, is accredited under the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
In 2021, The Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education was named following an endowment gift from the Beth and Lee Williams Foundation in honor of Dr. Jo Watts Williams ’55.
Mission: Who are We
The Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education at Elon University prepares equity-minded leaders in the fields of education, physical activity and wellness who enhance the learning and lives of children and adults.
Vision: What We Aspire to Be
To prepare highly effective professionals who have the knowledge and skills to work as teachers, educators, advocates, and mentors. Graduates will be recognized as leaders in their work with diverse populations in a variety of settings.
Values: What We Believe
In the Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education, we value the dignity of each person and we respect the physical and intellectual property of others. One of our most cherished assets is our strong sense of community in which all members’ identities and contributions are celebrated and where the rights of all individuals and groups are protected. We embrace diversity in its broadest sense, including, but not limited to, diversity of age, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, nationality, race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic standing, and intellectual viewpoint. Our students and colleagues are diverse, and all are welcome and valued as a crucial part of our community.