Busan Foreign School has been WASC accredited since 1998
The Purpose of Accreditation
The original purpose of accreditation in the United States was designed to encourage the standardization of secondary school programs, primarily to ensure for the benefit of colleges and universities that graduating students had mastered a particular body of knowledge. However, today the process developed by the Accrediting Commission for Schools, Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), involves a dual purpose that continues the expectation that schools must be worthy of the trust placed in them to provide high quality learning opportunities, but with the added requirement that they clearly demonstrate that they are about the critical business of continual self-improvement. The accreditation process is a vehicle that enables schools to improve student learning and school performance based on an analysis of those strengths and limitations. Participating schools must meet rigorous, research-based standards that reflect the essential elements of a quality and effective school, but again, must also be able to demonstrate engagement in as well as capacity to provide continuous school improvement.
ACS-WASC visited BFS from March 6-10, 2022 for a full review of the school’s progress toward achieving its action plan. Following that visit, BFS was granted a six-year accreditation through June of 2028, with a mid-cycle visit in the 2024-25 school year. In addition to granting continued accreditation, the visiting committee noted these areas of strength at BFS.
- The updated Student Learner Outcomes are clearly woven throughout the fabric of the school. They are known and valued by students, faculty, and parents.
- BFS is a warm and welcoming community where students feel known, cared for, and a deep sense of belonging.
- BFS has been intentional in the implementation of programs such as Responsive Classroom morning meetings, advisory, and Second Step to support the social-emotional learning and well-being of students.
- The academic programs at BFS set up students for success after high school. There is evidence of strong student achievement in academics, as measured against NWEA MAP, PSAT, SAT, and AP normed data.
The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) is one of six regional accrediting associations in the United States. The Commission provides assistance to schools located in California, Hawaii, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas, American Samoa, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and East Asia.
This association is composed of three commissions:
- Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities
- Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges
- Accrediting Commission for Schools
The Accrediting Commission for Schools extends its services to public, independent, church-related, and proprietary schools of the following levels and types: elementary schools; junior high/middle/intermediate schools, comprehensive/college preparatory high schools, continuation high schools, alternative high schools, occupational/vocational high schools, regional occupational programs/centers, adult schools, and vocational skill centers. Many of the schools accredited also include postsecondary courses, e.g., courses which require a high school diploma or G.E.D.
The Accrediting Commission for Schools, Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) believes that the goal of any school should be to provide for successful student learning. Programs encompassing both the cognitive and affective components of learning should foster human growth and development and enable students to become responsible, productive members of the school community and of society. Each school should develop a school purpose to reflect its beliefs. For ongoing program improvement, each school should engage in objective and subjective internal and external evaluations to assess progress in achieving its purpose.
The Commission grants accreditation to a school based upon the following:
- The presumption that the primary goals of accreditation are:
- Certification to the public that the school is a trustworthy institution of learning
- The improvement of the school’s programs and operations to support student learning
- The school’s self-study and the visiting committee’s report provides compelling evidence that:
- The school is substantially accomplishing its stated purposes and functions identified as appropriate for an institution of its type
- The school is meeting an acceptable level of quality in accordance with the WASC criteria adopted by the Accrediting Commission.
The mission of the Commission is to foster excellence in elementary, secondary, adult, and postsecondary education by encouraging school improvement through a process of continuing evaluation and to recognize, by accreditation, schools that meet an acceptable level of quality, in accordance with established criteria.