PHILADELPHIA, Pa. — The Middle States Association Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools announced today that 211 schools and school systems in 18 states and Puerto Rico and 20 countries have earned accreditation or reaccreditation, the gold standard for measuring and evaluating school performance.
“The accreditation process examines schools and school systems in a holistic way, supplementing student testing data to provide a more complete measure of performance and chart a strategic and realistic course for continuous school improvement,” said Henry G. Cram, Ed.D., president of the Middle States Association Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools. “At the Middle States Association, we look at the whole school – not just test scores – because we realize that improving outcomes requires a comprehensive approach.”
Accreditation is a self-evaluation process that schools and school systems voluntarily use to demonstrate they are meeting a defined set of research-based performance standards. The 12 Standards for Accreditation are: mission; governance and leadership; school improvement planning; finances; facilities; school organization and staff; health and safety; educational program; assessment and evidence of student learning; student services; student life and activities, and information resources.
The accreditation process begins with a self-study that is conducted by the school and school system and requires input from school leaders, teachers, parents and students. Following the self-study, a team of volunteer educators from Association member schools conducts an on-site peer review visit to observe school operations and interview various stakeholders.
The visiting team makes its recommendation to the Middle States Association Commissions, which voted on the accreditations at its biannual meeting earlier this month.
A full list of schools and school systems that earned accreditation or reaccreditation is available here.
About Middle States Association Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS)
Based in Philadelphia, the Middle States Association is a worldwide leader in accreditation and school improvement. For over 125 years, Middle States has been helping school leaders establish and reach their goals, develop strategic plans, promote staff development and advance student achievement. With more than 2,700 accredited schools and school systems in 34 states and nearly 100 countries, MSA-CESS is proud of its continuing legacy and its ongoing innovations to meet the challenges of improving education in the 21st century.