Eastside Prep School receives accreditation

January 29, 2010 (Kirkland, WA) Eastside Preparatory School announced today that they were awarded unconditional accreditation by the Pacific Northwest Association of Independent Schools (PNAIS).

“We’re very excited about achieving this important milestone so quickly,” expressed Dr. Terry Macaluso, PhD, Head of Eastside Prep. “I give a huge amount of credit to our faculty, staff, and board who have worked so hard and so carefully on creating a school that meets challenging standards and provides an outstanding education in a caring environment.”

According to the PNAIS Web site , (www.pnais.org), “Accreditation of an institution by PNAIS indicates that it meets or exceeds the PNAIS Major Standards and Good Practices. The school is periodically assessed through a process that requires full disclosure and a peer group review process seeking to confirm the congruence between the school's stated mission and its actual program and services. An accredited school is one which has available the necessary resources to achieve its stated purposes through appropriate educational programs, is substantially doing so, and gives reasonable evidence that it will continue to do so in the foreseeable future. Institutional integrity is also addressed through accreditation.”

PNAIS is a member in good standing of the NAIS Commission on Accreditation and has voluntarily agreed to abide by the Criteria for Effective Independent School Accreditation Practices. Additionally, the PNAIS accreditation program has been recognized by the State of Washington.

"PNAIS accreditation is an exciting milestone for Eastside Prep,” observes parent Desiree Eden. “It validates what we as EPS parents know because we see the development of our children who are thriving in this vibrant academic community. The exceptional leadership of Dr. Terry Macaluso along with the incredibly talented and dedicated staff has truly provided the student and parent community of EPS with an engaging and enriching experience in academic excellence. For such a young school to receive PNAIS accreditation is a tribute to their talent, passion, and commitment to education."

The process for earning accreditation is an arduous one, requiring hundreds of pages of documentation as well as answers to hundreds of questions. Faculty, staff, parent volunteers, and trustees began working on the "self-study" required for accreditation in January, 2008. school welcomed a visiting team in October, 2009. The team was composed of faculty and administrators from peer PNAIS schools, who spent three days on campus visiting classes, interviewing students, parents, and faculty.

“We’re very proud of reaching this goal,” states Byron Bishop, President of Eastside Prep’s Board of Trustees. “The faculty and staff, under Dr. Macaluso’s leadership, have worked hard to make Eastside Prep into a great school that guides our students to be able to meet the challenges of the future.” Bishop, who is an EPS parent and also a co-founder of Expedia, continued, “The skills that my kids are developing – critical thinking, writing, public speaking, integrating and synthesizing information, caring for our environment – are all skills necessary to being successful in the 21st century.”

Another EPS parent Emily Anthony adds, "We chose EPS after an extensive school search, and we are so glad we did, because our daughter is thriving there. She finds the work both challenging and engaging, and the faculty and students have warmly welcomed her to the community. She is learning a lot and she's happy as she goes off to school every day, which is exactly what you hope for as a parent."

Eastside Prep is a co-ed middle and upper school located in Kirkland, WA near Seattle. Eastside Prep offers a college preparatory program for students in grades 5-12. The school stresses critical thinking, integration of ideas and disciplines, an ethic of citizenship, and a focus on sustainability. The mission of Eastside Preparatory School is to guide students to think critically, act responsibly, lead compassionately, and innovate wisely. Its inquiry-based and interdisciplinary curriculum is organized around central themes. The arts, service learning, interscholastic athletics, and a strong technology program are offered to all students. Eastside Prep opened in September 2003 and graduated its first class in 2009 with its first alumni attending Brown University, University of Washington, Lewis and Clark, Arizona State University, Dickinson, and others. The school can be contacted at 425-822-5668 or via their Web site at www.eastsideprep.org.

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