Why Become Accredited?
The primary objective of an accreditation is to make good schools better. It also helps to establish some consistency of standards, preserving the Montessori philosophy and spirit of Montessori education. It helps schools be accountable to each other, parents and the community. Self-evaluation is a professional benefit when undertaken with a commitment to self-improvement. Schools that have completed a CCMA evaluation will find that a spirit of enquiry develops in the whole school concerning its Montessori values and plans for the future. It also helps to ensure that a school has its policies and practices well documented.
Accreditation gives us a unified voice when we speak with government policy makers (agencies) with regards to consistency of standards, as well as to recognize and support our basic principles.
Everyone benefits collectively, individually, and professionally.
LENGTH OF THE ACCREDITATION PROCESS
Typically, the Accreditation process may take 12 to 18 months to complete, however this timeframe can be adjusted depending on the school size or a particular situation.
- 18 to 9 Months ahead – required to attend CCMA school Accreditation meeting
- Minimum 12 Months ahead – plan for process in school budget
- 9 Months – Review accreditation with administrators
- 6 Months – Discussions with staff & establish date of visit
- 3 Months – Documents assembled, teachers’ self-evaluations begun
- 2 Months – Documents gathered, photocopied, evaluations and binders prepared
- 1 Month prior to visit – Binders in hands of visiting consultants
- Day of Accreditation visit
- 1 to 2 Months later – draft of report sent
Planning 6 to 12 months in advance is recommended as the essence of Accreditation is in the self-evaluation process. For all schools the maximum input from all stakeholders should be encouraged. The goal of the internal evaluation is that everyone participates; everyone is invested. The school examines all aspects of its operations, seeking to discover its strengths and weaknesses, determining how well its programme fulfills its mission and measuring itself against the CCMA standards and criteria for Best Practices.