Can you tell by the weekly administrator articles that we have accreditation on our minds? We have been preparing for BJA’s accreditation review, which is finally upon us. So what does that involve?
On Sunday, the six members of the accreditation review team will arrive in Greenville for a three-day accreditation review, which officially begins Monday morning. Because BJA is such a large school, the six members will divide into two teams—one to focus on the elementary school and the other on the middle and high schools. The team members will examine classrooms, offices, policies, and records during their stay. The team is chaired by Edward Earwood, the executive director of South Carolina Association of Christian Schools.
Prior to their visit, we have prepared a self-study, which measures BJA against the twelve standards for accreditation. The team will compare what they observe to the self-study to verify that we are doing what we say we are doing. Team members will observe teachers and interview students, teachers, and parents. They will review policy manuals, such as the student/parent handbook and faculty manuals. They will examine our Curriculum Trak documents, which describe what we teach in each class and why we teach it. They will study safety procedures, interview financial and school administrators, and observe car lines. Few school-related functions go unconsidered.
The team members will then formulate a final school report, which describes the findings. Central to the report are commendations, suggestions, and recommendations for each standard. A commendation is given for something that is notable. A suggestion is given for anything that may help to improve the educational program at BJA. A recommendation denotes a significant concern that must be addressed before the next accreditation review visit. The committee then makes an overall recommendation to the accrediting agencies regarding accreditation status. The agencies—there are five of them—typically meet on a semiannual basis to make an official determination for accreditation.
Lord willing, upon a favorable recommendation, Bob Jones Academy will be re-accredited by the following five accrediting agencies: South Carolina Association of Christian Schools, the American Association of Christian Schools, North American Christian School Accrediting Agency, National Council for Private School Accreditation, and the regional accreditor Cognia (formerly AdvancED).
And with that, the school improvement cycle begins again.
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.