What Is Accreditation?
Accreditation is a process of review and appraisal that schools undertake to validate their quality of education, verify that they are striving for excellence and ensure that they are managed with a high standard of governance and leadership.
Schools that possess accreditation and state approval by authorities recognized at the state level are considered to be recognized schools in the U.S. education system. In addition, private schools that are accredited by other associations recognized by the federal Departments of Defense, Homeland Security and State are also considered to be recognized.*
Why is accreditation important when considering a school?
- Accreditation documents that a school meets the standards of quality established by the academic community
- It provides validation of the credibility of the school through a peer review process
- It improves instruction by promoting increased student achievement
- It promotes ongoing instructional improvement through a continuous process of self-assessment and systematic school development
- It provides accountability to the school community
Is organizational membership the same as accreditation?
No. Schools accredited by an agency or organization are held to higher standards and continuous review versus those schools selecting not to undergo the accreditation process and opting solely for membership.
* International Affairs Office, U.S. Department of Education, 12/2007