The New England Association of Schools and Colleges (N.E.A.S.C.) is the accrediting agency for high schools (and colleges/universities) in the northeast. The Association’s purpose is to assess member schools against a set of twenty-first century standards in order to evaluate the extent to which a school is providing a relevant and rigorous learning experience for our students.
Bedford High School is being evaluated by NEASC. We began the first step in the process last year. Every staff member was assigned to one of seven committees correlating with the seven standards being measured. Each committee was charged with “self-assessing” how we are meeting each of the standards, providing evidence of such, and creating written reports with respect to compliance. We were also charged with identifying our strengths and areas in need of improvement. This phase of the process has been ongoing for more than a year. At this time the draft report is complete. A final report will be sent to NEASC for review in June.
Phase two in the process involves a visiting team (consisting of 16 educators) coming to Bedford High for three days in September. The visiting team’s charge will be to evaluate the substance of our report against the NEASC standards by looking at evidence, attending classes, talking with students, teachers. parents and administrators. This team will provide a written assessment indicating the status of our accreditation and any commendations and recommendations for the school.
Phase three involves BHS considering any recommendations and developing a strategy to implement identified areas of growth. Following the report, BHS is responsible to provide a two and five year follow-up progress reports.
The full accreditation process is comprehensive, occupying much of our professional meeting time and teacher time outside of their work day. Because we are a school that believes in “pushing our comfortable limits” we have embraced the process because we believe we can and should always seek to improve the learning experience we provide for our students.