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The accreditation process is a supportive partnership between member institutions and the CPS Commission as they work together throughout an ongoing 10-year cycle. The process engages schools in comprehensive analysis, self-reflection, and planning in response to the Standards of Accreditation. 

Please note that going forward, public elementary and middle schools will use the same accreditation process and Standards as high schools. This vertical alignment can help schools and districts create a stronger Vision for Learning for a student's journey from kindergarten through graduation.

Schools hosting Accreditation Teams through the end of 2019 will continue to use the 2011 CPSS Standards and the 2014 CPEMS Standards and associated processes as appropriate.

The process of CPS Accreditation is multi-dimensional and continuous. The main phases of the cycle are:

  • Self-Reflection
  • Collaborative Conference
  • School Growth Plan Development and Implementation
  • Decennial Accreditation Visit
  • Growth Plan revisions and progress reports

The process of reflection, planning, and implementation is cyclical and does not end with the Decennial Accreditation Visit. Schools should be actively monitoring evidence, assessing progress, identifying changing priorities or school needs, and adjusting their school plans as necessary for continuous growth and improvement.