Accreditation of private schools is important to some parents, especially in the United States. Bear in mind that accreditation is in fact a process with controversy and dispute of its overall validity. The following gives you our overview of the issue of accreditation of private schools. Or go directly to our list of private schools in the USA.
In the USA, The National Association of Private Schools is a body made up of educators and administrators from Christian and private schools who have set out criteria to recognize the educational quality of private and Christian schools in the United States. Also, numerous states are home to official bodies offering accreditation. For example The Texas Alliance of Accredited Private Schools (TAAPS) sets standards for schools to meet.
Christian schools in the USA can be accredited by the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI). ACSI is headquartered in Colorado Springs, CO, with offices worldwide, providing accreditation to Christian private schools that adhere to certain standards and practices.
An accredited private school has worked to meet and maintain standards of an accrediting body. However, in the case of career schools in the USA, some bodies are called 'accreditation mills.' These bogus organizations back schools that in fact offer specious credentials to students.
Unfortunately, the education regulation system in the United States (such as it is) also leaves itself open to abuse when it comes to private schools, whether or not that actually takes place with any frequency.
According to the USDE, it "does not have the authority to accredit private or public elementary or secondary schools." In addition, "the Department does not recognize accrediting bodies for the accreditation of private or public elementary and secondary schools."
On another hand, NAPS admits that "many of the finest schools in the country are not accredited, yet their students rank with those from the largest and best funded private and public school programs." In fact, NAPS only accredits private schools that deliberately seek accreditation.
Finally, Canada and many European countries education are more heavily regulated by government bodies than United States schools.
In the end, though, you should be most concerned with how well the school is otherwise recognized, whether the school’s courses are fully accepted by peer and higher-level institutions. Many schools listed with ourkids.net facilitate students’ entering the university of their choice. We urge you to consider the school’s overall reputation as the most important single factor as you search for a private school in Canada, the United States, or Europe.
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