Accreditation and professional affiliations and associations indicate a private school has been evaluated by and met or exceeded specific criteria set forth by a designated and agreed-upon accrediting- or affiliation-granting body.
These accreditations, affiliations, and associations can be national, regional, or local, covering religious beliefs, educational philosophies, or special interests and last for a specific number of years, often with prescribed steps in the interim to assure compliance. What they have in common is that they serve as a sort of stamp of approval, signifying to colleges and universities that their members operate schools with meaningful education standards.
“Accrediting is done by a variety of accrediting organizations,” points out the California Department of Education online (www.cde.ca.gov), citing the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, or WASC, as an example of an established organization that accredits both private and public K–12 schools. “WASC accreditation generally ensures that the credits and diploma awarded by the schools it accredits will be accepted by colleges and prospective employers,” says the CDE, which does not accredit schools.
WASC is one of five regional accrediting associations for schools and colleges, and its territory includes schools operating in California.
“School accreditation is a peer-review process that fosters excellence in education and encourages school improvement through discovery, dialogue, compliance, and commitment. Accreditation enables a member school to develop clearly defined goals and objectives based on its mission and philosophy,” says the California Association of Independent Schools (www.caisca.org).
Accreditation & Affiliation Key
Key to Private School Accreditations, Affiliations, and Associations
Here is a list of the most common of the accrediting, affiliation, and association bodies that schools list in our Regional Guides to Private Schools.
View Private Schools in Our Annual Guides to Private Schools:
- East Bay Private Schools
- Silicon Valley Private Schools
- Peninsula Private Schools
- San Francisco Private Schools
- Marin Private Schools
- North Bay Private Schools.
ABC – Arts in Basic Curriculum, abcinstitutesc.org
ACSI – Association of Christian Schools International, www.acsi.org
AEFE – Agence pour l’Enseignement Français à l’Etranger, aefe.fr
AISAP – Assoc. of Independent School Admission Professionsals, www.aisap.org
AMI – American Montessori Internationale, www.montessori-ami.org
AMS – American Montessori Society, www.amshq.org
BADA – Bay Area Directors of Admission, www.issfba.org
BAMA – Bay Area Montessori Association, www.bayareamontessoriassociation.com
CAIS – California Association of Independent Schools, www.caisca.org
CDE – California Department of Education, www.cde.ca.gov
Cognia – Cognia Performance Standards, www.cognia.org
CPSTEME – Carnegie Science Seal of Excellence for STEM, www.carnegiesciencecenter.org
CQEL – California Quality Early Learning, www.caqualityearlylearning.org
Green Ribbon School – US Department of Education, www2.eg.gov
IALDS – International Association of Lerner Driven Schools, ialds.org
IB, IBO – International Baccalaureate, www.ibo.org
ICG – Independant Curriculum Group, www.independentcurriculum.org
ICGS – International Coalition of Girl’s Schools, girlsschools.org
IMC – The International Montessori Council, www.montessori.org
ISBOA – CA Independent Schools Business Officer Association, www.isboa.org
ISSFBA – Independent Schools of the San Francisco Bay Area, www.issfba.org
NAEYC – National Association for the Education of Young Children, www.naeyc.org
NAIS – National Association of Independent Schools, www.nais.org
NCAA Approved – National College Athletic Association, www.ncaa.org
NCEA – National Catholic Educational Association, www.ncea.org
NCGS – National Coalition of Girl’s Schools, girlsschools.org
NCPSA – National Council for Private School Accreditation, www.ncpsa.org
NIPSA – National Independent Private Schools Association, www.nipsa.org
PASCH – Schulen: Partner der Zukunft, www.pasch-net.de
PEN – Progressive Education Network, www.progressiveeducationnetwork.org
POCIS – People of Color in Independent Schools of N CA, www.nocapocis.org
SBSA – Small Boarding Schools Association, www.sbsaonline.org
SHCOG – Sacred Heart Commission on Goals, www.sacredheartusc.education
TABS – The Association of Boarding Schools, www.tabs.org
WASC – Western Association of Schools and Colleges, www.acswasc.org
WBSA – Western Boarding Schools Association, www.westernboardingschools.org
WCEA – Western Catholic Education Association, www.wcea.org