While accreditation is recognized as an indicator of excellence, it is rarely understood. Accreditation is seen as the “Good Housekeeping seal of approval” for schools, and that is certainly not far from the mark. But what exactly is accreditation? Is it important? And how does it benefit my children? Over the next few weeks, we would like to delve more deeply into these questions and provide a more complete understanding of accreditation especially as it benefits the education of your children.
At the heart of accreditation is a process with the goal of continual self-improvement. The school is evaluated by a third party familiar with the elements of excellent schools. These accreditation agencies have established comprehensive standards by which schools are assessed. The process begins with a self-study conducted internally by the school faculty and staff and a documenting of the findings. This study occurs over several months or sometimes even a couple of years. When completed, an accreditation review team of peer educators is invited to come for several days to audit the findings. When certain levels of excellence are verified, the school is awarded the status of accreditation. A school improvement plan is a major part of the process, and with the school improvement plan in place, the process begins again. The accreditation cycle is a six-year cycle that culminates in another review team visit. Bob Jones Academy will experience the second accreditation review team visit next month when a team of six members will visit the school.
BJA is accredited by several agencies including South Carolina Association of Christian Schools, the American Association of Christian Schools, and Cognia (formerly AdvancEd), the major regional accreditor for this area of the country.
There are twelve accreditation standards by which schools are evaluated, and these will be our focus over the upcoming weeks with a more specific look at how BJA stacks up and how the standard benefits your children. Many of our administrators will be contributing articles so you will enjoy multiple perspectives. I trust that these articles will be beneficial to you and give you a greater understanding and appreciation for all that God has done and is doing at Bob Jones Academy. To God be the glory.
Bob Jones Academy exists to assist like-minded Christian parents in challenging students to love Jesus Christ, to embrace God’s truth, to exercise integrity, to pursue excellence, and to serve others.