Fifteen Philly high schools recommended for system-wide accreditation
The recognition will go a long way in improving the overall school experience for students in the city.
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As the School District of Philadelphia continues on the road to recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and the return to in-person learning, a new accreditation could provide more opportunities for students.
On Wednesday, July 14 the School District of Philadelphia announced that the Middle States Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS) had recommended the School District of Philadelphia receive system-wide accreditation. Fifteen high schools in the city will also join the district in receiving accreditation.
“The Middle States accreditation process aligns with the Board of Education’s newly identified goals and guardrails,” said Malika Savoy-Brooks, Ed.D., chief academic support officer at the School District of Philadelphia.
According to the district, schools with the accreditation will have more opportunities for students as accreditation makes them eligible for more federal funds.
The MSA-CESS accreditation is considered the gold standard for measuring and advancing school improvement.
In addition, the accreditation is one of the pre-requisites used by the College Board in determining a school’s eligibility to serve as a College Board test center and to offer advanced placement courses.
“The Middle State Accreditation strengthens the work we are doing by allowing us to examine and improve our processes and procedures and then receive affirmation by a team of experts that we are meeting high educational standards,” Savoy-Brooks said.
Individual high schools started receiving MSA-CESS accreditation in 2017, but it is an important recognition for the Philly School District as a whole because the accreditation is one recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
However, to receive the accreditation all district offices and 15 high schools had to provide representatives, including employees, students, parents and community members, to complete a self-study and showcase why the schools were deserving.
According to the district, as more schools continue to receive accreditation, the focus on district-wide efforts to grow and improve students academic performance will continue to be a priority.
“The School District of Philadelphia is committed to providing an excellent public school education to ensure all children graduate from high school ready to succeed,” said Savoy-Brooks.
The district states that their goal is for all School District of Philadelphia high schools to be accredited by 2024.
“When the new accreditation becomes official in October, a total of 37 of the 54 District high schools will be accredited,with a goal for all SDP high schools to be accredited by 2024,” School District of Philadelphia officials said.