In 2019 Clapham School began the process of re-accreditation with our accrediting agency, the Independent Schools Association of the Central States (ISACS). Over the course of the year, the faculty and members of our community contributed to the research and writing of the self-study. Then in the Spring of 2020, the process stalled during the coronavirus response. This blog post provides some updates about where things currently stand with the re-accreditation, as well as the plan going forward.
The ISACS accreditation agency made the decision to place re-accreditation for all schools on hold during the Spring of 2020, and going into this year, Clapham remains in the self-study phase. This means that we have more time to research and write for our self-study. Our goal is to complete all written reports by Spring Break 2021 and then spend several weeks reviewing, editing, and coordinating these reports to submit the full report by the end of the current school year.
One benefit of the excellent teacher retention at Clapham School this year is that we have retained the expertise and insights from the reports written during the 2019-2020 school year. This strong institutional memory created over the past two years of our self-study report will be helpful for our school. Another benefit of sustained teacher retention is that our faculty is well trained to complete the remaining reports. We have great confidence in our ability to finish the self-report well.
After submitting our self-study, the next step is hosting a visiting team who will review the written self-study, observe the operations of our school in person, and interview different constituents in our community. ISACS is confident that we will be able to host a visiting team during the 2021-2022 school year, and we will be scheduling that visit sometime during next semester.
Even though the coronavirus delayed the re-accreditation process, we remain confident that we have a strong team, a quality self-study, and a good plan going forward.
The re-accreditation process is a strategic goal for our school in many ways. We are a growth-minded school, so re-accreditation enables us to walk our talk by identifying areas of strength and areas where we can grow. Continuous growth helps us to provide the best quality learning environment for our students.
In addition to our fundamental commitment to growth, there are several other strategic goals accreditation provides, especially as we establish the credentials of our Upper School. Clapham has developed a reputation in our community for academic excellence, and accreditation verifies and validates that reputation. Some of the programs we want to provide, such as on-site testing and athletics, will stem from this crucial step in our growth process.
We are grateful for the ways that our community of faculty, students, and parents have contributed to this work of re-accreditation. Keep us in your prayers, specifically as it relates to clarity in our writing and that our visiting team will help us clarify our mission, vision, and goals as a school.