The Conference of Educational Administrators of Schools and Programs for the Deaf (CEASD) accreditation is a voluntary process undertaken by the CEASD member schools. Going through the accreditation process demonstrates schools are committed to continuous school improvement. Accreditation by CEASD began in the late 1950s and was developed by a committee of educators of students who are deaf and hard of hearing. The process has evolved into the school improvement model used today.
CEASD accreditation is designed for schools that adhere to a set of educational standards. The accreditation process is a means to effectively drive student performance and continuous improvement in the education of students who are deaf and hard of hearing. Accreditation is a set of rigorous protocols and research-based processes for reviewing a school’s organizational effectiveness.
CEASD accreditation examines the whole school-the school programs, the residential programs, the support services, the auxiliary services, the cultural context, and the community of stakeholders-to determine how well the parts work together to meet the needs of students. Accreditation is both a significant achievement pronouncing a school’s quality of education and an enriching process for the school that recognizes performance gains.
The process of accreditation allows schools to build true capacity to improve student learning and make continuous school improvement a reality. It is the process of accreditation that yields the greatest continuing benefit for schools. During the process, schools complete an internal self-assessment in terms of the 12 CEASD standards as part of their self-study. This process can produce a wealth of significant insights. Honest self-evaluation is unparalleled in its ability to uncover and bring into sharp focus unique challenges for a school. The school’s self-study then leads to a school improvement plan that the school develops that includes student achievement goals as well as organizational goals.
After the self-study is complete and the school improvement plan is developed, a team made-up of external reviewers from CEASD visits the school for four days. During the visit, the team reviews the self-study, interviews staff, students and community stakeholders, and observes in the school and dormitories. The team develops commendations and recommendations based on their observations and interviews. This process can assist the leadership and stakeholders of a school to tackle those areas that may be impacting desired performance levels. Accreditation has several positive effects. The process is a catalyst for transformative excellence, and CEASD’s accreditation process is designed on a standards-based framework to support continuous improvement and transform education. Many states have planning requirements and standards for schools and programs for the Deaf. District or state and school planning including regional accreditation can be linked to the CEASD accreditation process.
Accreditation is linked to school improvement. The accreditation process asks schools to critically evaluate their vision, strategies, priorities, leadership, and programs and resources. The process of earning and maintaining accreditation provides schools with clear and compelling direction for implementing changes to move toward excellence.
For additional information regarding CEASD Accreditation, see:
Accreditation, Viability, & Continuous Improvement
The Self Assessment Guide for Schools Seeking Accreditation, “The Guidelines”
List of CEASD Accredited Schools