During the week of October 23, an evaluation committee from the Middle States Commission on Elementary and Secondary Schools spent time in Voorhees High School as part of the reaccreditation process, diving into all aspects of the school and interviewing students, faculty and staff and parents. On Friday, October 27, the chair of the committee announced that the committee unanimously approved Voorhees for full reaccreditation without recommendations or sanctions, the highest recognition possible! In fact, the committee unanimously said they would send their own children to Voorhees, which is a great compliment.
Accreditation is an external, objective validation of school quality and student achievement that fosters continuous school improvement. There are many benefits to becoming an accredited institution, such as it:
- Provides a systematic process that requires a school to justify its existence, establish a vision of its future, and determine specific objectives to realize that vision.
- Reveals information that serves as a sound basis for school or district improvement, strategic planning, restructuring, and staff development.
- Takes a holistic approach, examining the entire school-philosophy and goals, its community, programs and services, facilities and financial stability.
- Provides the means to manage change through regular assessment, planning, implementation, and reassessment.
- Helps schools/districts establish priorities for improvement by using comprehensive, research-based needs assessments, rather than faddish approaches to improvement.
- Requires the establishment and implementation of a multi-year improvement plan based upon the school’s vision of the future.
- Provides an excellent growth experience for staff, who participate on volunteer visiting teams to evaluate other schools.
A final report will be issued later in the school year. To learn more about Middle States and the accreditation process, please visit: http://www.msa-cess.org/default.aspx?RelID=606525