CAIS Accreditation drives each school to continually strive for excellence, be more intentional in its practices and be accountable to all of its constituents.
All good schools continually evaluate their program and operations; however, self-evaluation alone can fall short with a limited internal perspective. Periodically supplementing self-evaluation with an external review can offer schools a new viewpoint that may otherwise go unrecognized and act as a catalyst for change.
The CAIS accreditation process is designed to achieve the dual purpose of accountability and school improvement - aligning their practices to the highest National Standards while guiding them through a continuous whole school improvement process, which combines both an internal self-evaluation and an external peer review.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we recognize that there are unusual barriers to application for CAIS membership. In the spirit of collaboration and support, the following guidelines will apply for the 2020-2021 school year.
Member and Candidate schools have access to all CAIS privileges, including Heads & Chairs and National Leadership Conferences, Leadership Institute modules at member rates, access to the resources in CAIS Connect, surveys, and Zoom meetings and webinars.
Applicant schools that have submitted both the fees and application materials will be given full membership privileges (listed above) at member rates.
The CAIS Standards and Indicators of Effective Practice are designed to reflect generally accepted principles of best practice in delivering high-quality education and furthering whole school improvement and sustainability. The Standards and Indicators are constantly evolving and are not to be taken as standards of reasonable conduct in any particular circumstance. It is up to each member school of CAIS to assess its specific circumstances and to take reasonable care.
The CAIS Standards and Indicators of Effective Practice are not intended to be a comprehensive code of the standards that, if met, will ensure that a school is a healthy and safe environment and is effective in delivering a high-quality education. The Standards and Indicators are constantly evolving and are intended as generally accepted principles of best practice in delivering education of genuine quality and furthering whole school improvement and sustainability. They are not to be taken as standards of reasonable conduct in any particular circumstance. It is up to each member school of CAIS to assess its own specific circumstances and to take reasonable care in those specific circumstances.
Currently, CAIS is a member in good standing with the International Council Advancing Independent School Accreditation (ICAISA). ICAISA is the international leader in independent school accreditation. ICAISA advances excellence and upholds standards in order to ensure quality and accountability in independent schools across the globe. In addition to establishing and maintaining criteria for effective accreditation and conducting formal evaluations of member association accreditation programs, ICAISA also examines and assesses the evolving educational environment, and acts as a catalyst in partnership with associations in navigating significant change, developing innovative practices, and promoting transformative leadership in the accreditation field. Ultimately, the work of ICAISA strengthens independent school education and supports the ongoing improvement of individual schools.
The Value of Accreditation by an ICAISA Member Association (PDF)