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Accreditation Visitations. Accreditation is… Accreditation is not…. Accreditation.

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Accreditation Visitations

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Accreditation visitations

Accreditation Visitations

Accreditation is…

Accreditation is not…



  • Accreditation is a means for a school to determine their compliance with a set of standards and benchmarks, determining strengths and opportunities for growth based on evidence. Survey results are only one piece of evidence. Then a plan is formulated for improvement.



  • Accreditation is not about “wordsmithing” or creating fancy documents.

  • Accreditation work should be honest and professional.



  • Accreditation is a means to obtain an accurate picture of where a school is and where it wants to be. The action plan is the road map of how to get there.

  • Done well, the process will show the school where it needs to improve. The school staff determine which areas they want to document for accreditation purposes and write the action plan on those areas.

Two day visitation validate benchmarks and action plans

Two-day Visitation Validate Benchmarks and Action Plans

  • Review the school’s ratings and evidence

  • Validate the work that has been completed, making suggestions and recommendations for improvement

  • Electronic – login on website to view prior to visit and to work during visit:


Accreditation visitations

This is the dashboard when you login to do a visitation.

Accreditation visitations

You can see the basic information and then click on the ARCA link. The team can upload files, too.

Accreditation visitations

There are three tabs to use. The summary tab shows the school’s response to each benchmark.

Accreditation visitations

The questionnaire tab shows the details for each benchmark.

Accreditation visitations

You can click on the evidence that is attached.

Accreditation visitations

You can see the superintendent’s response. The team then indicates their response and makes comments, as needed.

Accreditation visitations

The committee reports, action plan, etc. are located on the Forms tab.

Visitation team

Visitation Team

Chairperson and two team members (more if larger school)

Chairperson from outside the diocese; Team members may be from within the diocese

Each team member reviews a different Domain

During the visitation

During the Visitation

Team members review the Domain Committee Reports, Benchmark Ratings, Evidence, and Comments.

Observations and interviews are some of the first-hand evidence used to validate the benchmark ratings and action plans.

A team can always ask for more or specific evidence.

During the visitation1

During the Visitation

Meet with Pastor, Administration, Staff, Parents, and Students; Sample Questions


How are you involved with the students, staff, and administrators (5.5)?

Do you see Catholic identity, scripture, Catholic Tradition, and Catholic social teachings integrated into all subject areas (2.4, 2.5, 2.7)?

How do you see the staff as role models for the students (3.4)?

During the visitation2

During the Visitation

Observe each classroom for 10 to 20 minutes to validate level of compliance with specific benchmarks:

Mission statement visible 1.4

Catholic Culture visible 2.6

Role Model 3.4 / supports faith life 4.5

Instruction allows students to become evaluators, problem solvers, decision makers 7.3

Instruction prepares students to be excellent users of technology 7.4

Instruction addresses affective dimensions 7.5

Instruction engages and motivates all students 7.6

Reviewing the action plan

Reviewing the Action Plan

Is the goal specific and measurable?

Will the evidence demonstrate success of the goal?

Are a timeline, person responsible, and resources listed for the steps?

Taken as a whole do the steps lead toward success of the goal?

Sample action plan

Sample Action Plan

Goal 1

Angel Gabriel Catholic School faculty will use Catholic intellectual tradition to help students think critically about the world around them. Eighth graders will demonstrate an improved understanding of Catholic intellectual tradition and seventh graders will demonstrate an improved ability to debate by the spring of 2020 (2.5)

Sample action plan1

Sample Action Plan

Goal 2

Angel Gabriel Catholic School will update our facilities management and technology plans so that we have an integrated set of planning documents that will enable the school to better use our resources. Through implementation of a new integrated plan, there will be a cost savings of 2% by 2018 and the ability to add $20,000 to upgrade technology in 2017. (12.1)

Completing the report

The visitation report is the teams response on each benchmark and a form that is uploaded on the Forms tab regarding the action plan and general comments.

Completing the Report

Completing the report1

Completing the Report

  • Each team member presents their Domain to the team

  • Discussion on any benchmarks where the team member does not agree with the school

  • Comments are made on all “disagree” marks; Comments may be made on “agree” marks

  • Team makes any comments or recommendations for the action plan and any general comments not covered else where

Sample schedule

Sample Schedule

Team arrives the evening before the visit and has an introductory meeting.

Day 1

7:30 amArrival at school / Introductions / Tour

MorningMeet with steering committee co-chairs Brief team meeting


Team work sessions

Lunch- Team meets with steering committee for clarifications

Sample schedule1

Sample Schedule


Meet with Pastor; Students

Meet with staff and teachers, as needed

Team work sessions

EveningTeam dinner and work session

Day 2

Drop Off TimeMeet with Parents

MorningTalk with Diocesan Schools Office

Continue observations / meetings as needed

Team work sessions

Early AfternoonTeam work sessions

Closing Report



  • If this is the first visitation training you have attended, please email me. We need trained visitors in each diocese.

  • Mary Camp, FCC Associate for Accreditation; office – 850-224-7906; cell – 850-728-4272

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