Our Foundation Documents
The Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools, building on the rich history of the Middle States Association, aspire to improve the quality of education in the United States and around the world by assisting schools to achieve excellence through the process of accreditation, by affirming to the public a member school’s trustworthiness and commitment to continuous improvement, by providing the network and resources for the promotion of proven practices.
We believe that:
- Education is important to the quality of life in our global society.
- All children deserve access to a quality education.
- All schools can achieve excellence in both teaching and learning through innovation.
- The process of self assessment, external validation, and accountability is essential to school improvement.
- Achieving excellence through accreditation promotes a commitment to a shared vision of continuous improvement, diverse stakeholder support, and sustained effort over an extended period of time.
- Accreditation is a collaborative partnership grounded in professionally recognized and accepted research-based standards.
Profile of an Accredited School*
An accredited school:
- Adheres to the Middle States Standards for Accreditation;
- Uses its mission, beliefs, and goals as the basis for daily decision-making;
- Operates in the public interest and in accordance with ethical practice;
- Accepts responsibility for the level of performance of its students;
- Remains committed to continuous improvement in student learning and to its capacity to produce the levels of learning desired and expected by its community;
- Operates in a collegial and collaborative way with all of its stakeholders;
- Sustains its focus on implementing recommendations, addressing monitoring issues and correcting stipulations that may be part of its notification of accreditation and fulfills its maintenance requirements to the Commissions
*These same expectations apply to all categories of membership including schools, systems, learning services providers, and career/technical schools.