Accreditation is inextricably linked to institution and educational system improvement. All non-charter public schools in the District are fully accredited by Cognia formerly AdvancEd, and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools ("SACS"). The Broward County School District is the second-largest, fully accredited, school district in the nation and Florida's first fully accredited school system since 1962.
The accreditation process asks institutions and systems to critically evaluate their vision, strategies, priorities, leadership, programs, and resources. Accreditation is designed to help educational systems boost their ongoing performance efforts for the benefit of their students. Cognia insists on a relentless pursuit of excellence – for itself and for the institutions it accredits. This ethic of excellence ensures that institutions will find rich benefits from accreditation and that parents can confidentially make informed decisions about their children’s education, knowing their child’s school is accredited. Accreditation matters because our students deserve the highest level of educational excellence possible.
Cognia Performance Standards
Cognia's standards and key characteristics are the foundation for continuous improvement—not just accreditation. These are the elements that should guide every educational institution to ensure high-quality teaching and learning and overall organizational effectiveness.
Why Does Accreditation Matter?
Students benefit from their institution or educational system’s commitment to raising student performance and achievement. Students that attend an accredited institution gain greater access to federal loans, scholarships, postsecondary education and military programs.
This ethic of excellence ensures that institutions will find rich benefits from accreditation and that parents can confidently make informed decisions about their child(ren)’s education, knowing their child(ren)’s school is accredited.
The accreditation process leads teachers to critically evaluate teaching and learning with a focus for academic excellence.
For Communities and Businesses
As a result of schools exhibiting educational excellence, communities are viewed as desirable for economic growth and business expansion.
Broward County will continue to strive for excellence in education. District Accreditation, as a Quality System, has validated Broward County's outstanding accomplishments as well as recognized the efforts of every Broward County School District employee.
In November of 2021, we hosted a 50-member accreditation team that brought in educational experts from around the country. The team spent 3 days in Broward completing a comprehensive review of our system, interviewed over 1600 staff members and stakeholders and reviewed hundreds of our documents. The exit report announced another 5 years of accreditation and validated the quality of our school system.
The district-wide accreditation process involves the following:
- a 5 year cycle where we host an external review of our school system
- provide a mid-cycle (2 ½ year) progress report
- conduct an internal review
- complete the cycle by hosting another accreditation visit at the end of 5 years
- after each accreditation visit the visiting team leaves commendations (accomplishments) and required actions for continuous improvement.