The College of Pastoral Supervision & Psychotherapy is a theologically based covenant community, dedicated to "recovery of the soul" and promoting competency in the clinical pastoral field.
As the new chair of the standards committee for CPSP, I have been charged by the Governing Council to review our standards and recommend changes to them. As I begin this task, there are four guidelines that are informing the way that I think about standards:
1) Standards need to accomplish 4 things: provide guidance to Chapters in how they function, allow Chapters sufficient leeway to address people and situations individually without being hamstrung by unnecessary rules, ensure enough uniformity in practice to ensure consistency in quality of certification practices, and be in keeping with our commitment to travel light.
2) In places where our standards and practice are not consistent, both the standard and the practice need to be examined in light of our commitments as a community that are spelled out in the Covenant. Ultimately the Covenant should guide the decisions about what is changed and what remains.
3) Statements in the Standards that seem to be superflous need to be eliminated. Streamlining the Standards will make them easier to understand and use and will also make them "lighter."
4) Standards are a public declaration of the quality and consistency of our programs and provide a public defense against those who publicly seek to malign our programs.
In reviewing the standards, I am seeking to ensure that these four guidelines are consistently informing our standards.
The following changes to the Standards were approved by the Governing Council:
• Eliminate statements in the Standards that limit equivalency for CPE units for certification to only one.
• Including the CPSP Covenant as a part of the Standards to emphasize their centrality in our life together.
• Amend the current third paragraph of the introduction to the Standards to state:
CPSP Standards provide guidance to chapters and other CPSP structures as they do their work of certifying and recertifying persons, accrediting programs, and upholding ethical standards. They assure sufficient consistency in practice and application so as to insure the quality and effectiveness of CPSP certified individuals and accredited training programs. It is understood that the Standards will not address all possible situations involving individuals, and in cases where the Standards fail to address specific individual circumstances, the spirit of the Standards, informed by conversations with consultants and informed by the CPSP Covenant, will be applicable. CPSP Standards are reviewed at least biannually by the CPSP Governing Council and updated as necessary. In situations or relationships where it appears that CPSP Standards are in conflict or contradiction to the CPSP Covenant, the spirit of the CPSP Covenant takes precedence.
I invite the CPSP community to join in this endeavor of reviewing and updating our standards. Please contact me and let me know what you would like to see in our Standards. What for you are the essential functions of our Standards? What in our Standards do you think need to be changed, eliminated, or maintained?
Also, I would like to create a Standards Committee so that this work is not mine alone. I would like this committee to be representative of our membership, including members at all levels of certification. If you are interested in serving on a Standards Committee, please contact me.
In order to facilitate these conversations, I have established an e-mail address specifically for communication to the Standards Committee. The e-mail is CPSPstandards@gmail.com. I look forward to hearing from our community.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at October 23, 2009 9:41 AM