Beacon and Spire Schools, Links Academy obtain NEASC accreditation

Greenwich Education Group (GEG) announces that its Beacon and Spire Schools and Links Academy have obtained accreditation from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc. (NEASC). NEASC is the nation’s oldest accrediting association, serving more than 2,000 public and independent schools, colleges and universities throughout the New England states, as well as American/international schools in more than 67 nations worldwide.

Accreditation is a standards-based assessment process that includes both a self-study component and a peer review completed by visiting committee representatives from other schools. The accreditation attests to substantial compliance with established qualitative standards, integrity to public statements describing the school’s programs, a commitment to improvement and a sufficiency of institutional resources. The schools were previously accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools in 2009.

According to Cameron C. Staples, NEASC president and CEO, “Accreditation has been a longstanding stimulus for educational improvement throughout New England. NEASC prides itself on its enduring commitment to self-regulation and peer-review. The peer-review process brings educators from all over New England together and allows for honest, objective and comprehensive evaluations carried out with the utmost integrity and commitment to research-driven standards.”

Vicky Newman, founder and executive director of Greenwich Education Group, stated, “We are incredibly proud of obtaining the NEASC accreditation at Beacon and Spire Schools and Links Academy, and are excited that Pinnacle School will begin the process this fall. This comes from the hard work, dedication and passion of our heads of school, teachers and staff members. We are so lucky to have a staff that is a true dream team. In my 25 years of being in the field of education, I have never had the pleasure of working with such a talented group of educators.”

Newman added, “The accreditation process was both rigorous and challenging, but the team that assessed Beacon, Spire and Links validated the mission, structure and exceptional personnel in our schools, using the adjectives ‘life-changing’ and ‘transformative’ in their report.”

Meredith Hafer, Beacon’s head of school, acknowledged many people for the successful accreditation. “The entire community of teachers, administrators, students, parents and alumni came together in this effort. This accreditation process was much more comprehensive and demanding than any we had undertaken previously, which makes the results that much more satisfying.”

Hafer pointed to the feedback from the visiting committee, which she revealed “gave high praise for the schools’ swift, creative growth, truly individualized curriculum and genuine care and compassion for the students. The schools were commended for ‘the resounding ultra-satisfaction’ of the students and parents who feel their lives have been positively transformed.”

With the new status comes new and continued opportunities. Tammy Moscrip, PhD, LCSW, executive director of Spire, explained, “The process creates a road map for expansion. With enrollment in all of our programs reaching its highest levels ever and with Beacon’s move to a new location in Hubbard Heights this fall, Spire and Pinnacle will have the ability to further expand their footprint at our Commerce Street location in Stamford.”

In addition to the NEASC status, Moscrip noted, “Spire is concurrently going through a state approval process which has resulted in us obtaining simultaneous guidance for areas of improvement and re-affirmation of our current best practices.”

Moscrip will be continuing her affiliation with NEASC as she has been asked to serve on a review committee in October 2015 for another school seeking NEASC accreditation.

Greenwich Education Group’s Pinnacle School is currently in the self-study phase as an approved NEASC candidate. On a more local level, following a one-year initial approval by the state of Connecticut, Pinnacle has now received state re-approval as a special education program. While all GEG schools experienced their highest enrollment levels in the 2014-15 school year, each anticipate even higher admissions in 2015-16.

About Greenwich Education Group

Greenwich Education Group is a multi-division organization focusing on every facet of a child’s academic development and success. Our divisions include in-home and center-based academic tutoring, standardized test preparation, education consulting, specialized learning services, transition programs and three accredited schools which focus on the special needs of their student populations: Beacon, Pinnacle, Spire Schools and Links Academy. Our curricula and teaching methods are as varied as our student body. Our philosophy of individualized instruction targets each student’s strengths and needs. Learn more about our programs at www.greenwichedgroup.com.

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