Since the beginning of the 2020-21 academic year, Pierce – The American College of Greece, with the guidance of College Advisor Ms. Kathleen Macdonell, has started the accreditation process of our school by the Middle States Association – Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS) in the USA by submitting all of the data required to describe its operation. At the beginning of October, an online visit – evaluation was conducted by Associate Vice President of MSA, Dr. Priscilla Feir. On October 13, the organization determined that our school fulfills all of its criteria and has therefore become a candidate for school accreditation!
The next step in the process towards accreditation has been underway since the winter. The self-study is being overseen by the Directors, the Administration, and a planning committee consisting of the heads of departments and programs. The study for each area of the school consists of a description of the program, an evaluation and assessment of the program, and a summary of its strengths and of any areas that need attention. The last step in the process, which will be completed in August and September, is for the planning committee to put together an Action Plan, which will guide the school’s development of its programs and the professional development for teachers for the next five years.
The completed self-study will be submitted to MSA in October, and in February, Pierce will be visited by a team of teachers and administrators, directed by the MSA, to evaluate the school and make a recommendation about accreditation. This entire process has been and will continue to be a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the amazing strengths of Pierce and to set it on its path for the future.
For over 125 years, the MSA organization, one of the top in the world, has accredited, advised and guided 2,600 educational institutions in 112 countries around the world to achieve their goals, formulate strategic plans and train members of faculty.
MSA evaluates schools overall in areas such as: achievement of the institution’s mission, the role of the leadership team, the implementation of strategic plans, the improvement and better utilization of facilities, the organization of the institution and its support services, the protection of the health of all members of the community, academic programs and extra-curricular activities, opportunities for teacher and student development and distinction, forms of evaluation, IT applications, etc.
Through accreditation, Pierce teachers will have opportunities to take part in international activities, conferences, training programs while, at the same time, the College’s international horizons are broadened, good practices are adopted and relationships and educational contacts with school networks abroad are developed.
In the near future, the admission of Pierce into another two international educational organizations has been set in motion. These are NESA (Near East and Southeast Asia Council of Overseas Schools) and NAIS (National Association of Independent Schools).