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EF Academy New York commits to continuous school improvement

[Thornwood, NY] For the last few months, EF Academy New York has been formally collaborating with two outside agencies to work toward membership and accreditation as part of its commitment to excellence and continuous improvement. While the international school already has approval from New York State’s Department of Education to operate as a US high school, and has since 2007, the school’s leadership team decided to go beyond the state’s requirements and enter EF Academy New York in accreditation and membership processes. These processes for Middle States Association (MSA) Accreditation and becoming a Council of International Schools (CIS) Member School will clearly demonstrate to staff, parents and students that EF Academy New York has and follows established policies and procedures that ensure student learning, safety and wellbeing.

Being a part of these communities requires time and resources but also provides benefits for EF Academy New York. By being a CIS Member School, the international high school has support for professional development in areas such as child safety protocols and best practice in faculty recruitment. CIS is a world leader in these areas and being a member school provides access to their expertise. Memberships to these communities clearly demonstrate to stakeholders that EF Academy New York is implementing school improvement through the utmost safety procedures and “shows the world that we have high measure of quality,” says Matt Sipple, Deputy Head of School for Academics.

The CIS requirements for gaining membership are stringent and involved submitting a lengthy report. In order for the school to have become a CIS Member, the EF Academy New York also had to host a CIS evaluator during a three-day virtual visit. During the visit, the evaluator conducted interviews with many different stakeholder groups and observed classes. The application and preliminary report that the school submitted to CIS ranked EF Academy New York, an IB World School, against established standards and indicators that covered every department, from custodial, to academic, and everywhere in between. Sipple tells us that becoming a Member School is an achievement because, “an outside, non-bias, and independent entity came in and verified our ratings.” EF Academy New York received its Member School status in January 2021.

At the same time, EF Academy New York is engaged in the pursuit of MSA Accreditation and is currently in the self-study phase of this process. The self-study includes surveying parents, students, faculty and staff, and the results will be used as evidence for areas of strength and weakness in school improvement. “Having MSA Accreditation will demonstrate to current and potential parents and students that EF Academy New York is an intellectual and welcoming environment,” says Alex Jareck, Marketing and Communications Manager; “It’ll make it easier to illustrate to families that their student will receive the best education they can get at a high school level.” At the conclusion of the self-study, a report will be sent to MSA, who will send a visiting team to campus in November 2021.

Though EF Academy New York is already well-established, the MSA accreditation will lead the school on a journey of continuous improvement and ultimately allow EF Academy to successfully open the new U.S. location in Pasadena, California in the Fall of 2022.


EF Academy New York is an international private high school welcoming day and boarding students. We offer internationally recognized academic programs and thorough university preparation for students from grades 9-12. Study with classmates from over 75 nationalities and transform your high school education at EF Academy.

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