Benefits of Membership > Accreditation


ISACS provides accreditation services to those schools whose mission is to lead schools to pursue exemplary independent education. ISACS accreditation certifies that its member schools are 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations and operates sufficiently independently of all other organizations to determine its own mission and program.  ISACS accreditation:

  • Validates that the school has met more than fifty standards of best practice for independent education.
  • Confirms that the school subscribes to principles of good practice in admissions and employment.
  • Requires that the school undergo a financial audit on a periodic basis and respond to any recommendations by the auditors.
  • Requires a survey of the school’s constituencies be undertaken as part of the accreditation process.
  • Attests that the school has a fully developed and disclosed mission and philosophy of education, and that its programs are in congruence with that philosophy.
  • Requires that the school undergo a comprehensive, rigorous and thorough process of school improvement every seven years involving broad participation of school personnel, the board of trustees, and major constituencies.

Every seven years, the ISACS self-study and external review process covers all major aspects and programs of the school, citing strengths, challenges faced, and recommendations for improvement.  As part of the accreditation cycle, the school completes a comprehensive self-study and other tasks which are then reviewed by a visiting team.  The visiting team is comprised of volunteers put together by ISACS, consisting of professionals, including classroom teachers, who understand and appreciate independent school qualities and contributions to American education.  Accreditation is approved (or not) by the ISACS Board of Trustees based on the visiting team’s and ISACS Accreditation Review Committee’s recommendation and findings.

Accreditation is approved by the ISACS Board of Trustees based on the ISACS Accreditation Review Committee and visiting team’s recommendation and findings.  The ISACS accreditation process has been certified as meeting the standards of the International Council Advancing Independent School Accreditation (ICAISA).

In addition to accreditation, ISACS membership provides the school community access to professional growth programs that demonstrate and support the development of best practices in independent education.  ISACS proudly provides accreditation and related services for over 240 of the region’s strongest independent schools.

For more information about ISACS accreditation, see Accreditation Services.

55 West Wacker, Suite 701 · Chicago, IL 60601 · Telephone (312) 750-1190 · Fax (312) 750-1193
Site Map