We are committed to...
  • encouraging diverse points of view.
  • continuous reflection and on-going improvement.
  • collegial relationships and ethical leadership.
  • independent education options for families.
  • promoting the independence of our schools.
  • quality standards without standardization.
  • assisting schools in fulfilling their missions.

Hosting A Visit

The Self Study

Over the course of twelve to eighteen months schools pursuing accreditation engage in a Self Study process structured around NWAIS Standards and Indicators.  The resulting document represents a comprehensive study outlining the ways in which the school is fulfilling its mission as well as the school’s self-identified strengths and weaknesses.  A successful Self Study process can result in:

  • Increased awareness within the school community of the history and operations of the school
  • Renewed understanding and commitment to school mission and values
  • Greater cohesiveness within the school community
  • Greater clarity regarding goals and strategies for achieving goals
  • Increased assurance of the quality and viability of the institution


The Accreditation Visit

Hosting a visiting team is a memorable and important step in the NWAIS accreditation process. When the school has completed its Self Study, they share this document with a Visiting Team comprised of administrators and teachers from peer schools.  The Visiting Team’s visit involves looking at the school through three lenses:

  • Congruence – Does the Self Study accurately reflect the day to day experience at the school?
  • Standards – Do the schools practices and policies fulfill the criteria outlined in NWAIS Standards and Indicators?
  • Synthesis – Offering the school a coherent picture of what the team has read, seen and heard
  • The Visiting Team does not determine whether or not the school receives accreditation, but instead offers Observations, Commendations, Recommendations and Suggestions to the school’s growth.

Download The Communication Toolkit
and Tell Your School's Accreditation Story


  • Guiding
  • Inspiring
  • Advancing
Northwest Association of Independent Schools
5001 California Ave. SW, Suite 112
Seattle, Washington 98136
T: 206.323.6137 • dstone@nwais.org
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