Welcome to the Education for Life page for open source sharing how to create a licensed and/or accredited education program. Bookmark this page if you are interested in tools, tutorials, and resources for starting and licensing your own school.
The page discusses licensing and accreditation with the following sections:
Educational accreditation is a type of quality assurance process under which services and operations of educational institutions or programs are evaluated by an external body to determine if applicable standards are met. If standards are met, accredited status is granted by the appropriate agency. Accreditation and licensing take place at a federal, state and/or a local government level. Many of the different education platforms have their own accreditation standards and evaluators to give out licenses. Accreditation should result in using the most applicable accountability measures to get desired outcomes for the individuals and the community.
Licensing is obtaining this accreditation from a legitimate organization, an objective outside source investigating your program and using a checklist to make sure it meets the standards set up within that group. The accrediting organization defines standards and expectations for the field in which it offers licenses. Once achieved, licensing and/or accreditation usually function as proof that specific standards have been met.
For the first time in the history of humanity, we have the ability to digitally access and share the knowledge and teachings of all the different cultures around the world. This provides a new and unique opportunity for combining “the best of the best” education programs, methodologies, and strategies. It also means we have more access to diverse and useful content. Sharing how we have chosen to put all of this together and teaching people how to license and/or gain accreditation for a program like ours (or of your own creation) is part of One Community’s open source goals and approach to global transformation for The Highest Good of All.
We see opens sourcing this process as helpful for building community, empowering people, and diversifying and improving educational opportunities and models. This will also allow people to provide better education programs where they feel they are needed and more easily share their innovations and invite others to participate.
Obtaining school licensing and accreditation has the potential to help:
Licensing and accreditation are possible if you understand the process necessary for achieving one or both and are willing to invest the time and energy to prove your program meets the necessary guidelines. We discuss here how to do this with the following sections:
The main reason to license and/or obtain accreditation for a school is to legitimize the education the students received. This makes it easier so they can further their pursuit of knowledge, obtain a relevant job, demonstrate to a future employer that they meet the standards in the global arena, etc. The license or accreditation also legitimizes schools who wish to attract students from outside their community.
Accreditation provides reciprocity of credits, courses, and grade-level placements between schools and universities around the world, and validation of the equivalency of diplomas and certificates to other accredited schools and universities. It also ensures a consistent level of quality in a network of participating schools that is valued by the public and by colleges and universities. In addition, students in accredited schools become part of a worldwide network of quality institutions focused on student performance. The existing social structure of education has expectations of accreditation at several different levels, and many organizations exist to assure the quality of the education is meeting these levels and the standards of society.
For this reason, accreditation is helpful (and often necessary) when participating in the global community where degrees and licenses play an important role in economic opportunities. The stamp of approval from a respected and objective institution validates an educational program as meeting the standards of that group. If a community is independent enough, they may also decide to stay independent and create their own standards and requirements and accreditation of their own programs.
From a world-change perspective, open sourcing the licensing and accreditation process is another way to help people:
The different types of licensing and accreditation that are explored here as viable options for integration in and out of the teacher/demonstration community/hub model are:
In most countries the function of educational accreditation is conducted by a government organization. In the U.S., the accreditation process was developed in the late 19th century and early 20th century after educational institutions perceived a need for improved coordination and articulation between secondary and post-secondary educational institutions, along with standardization of requirements between the two levels. As a result of this, a quality assurance process exists that is performed by private non-profit organizations. Those organizations are formally called accreditors.
All accreditors in the US must in turn be recognized by the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) in order to receive federal funding and any other type of federal recognition. This group is an advisory body to the U.S. Secretary of Education, so the federal government is the principal architect and controlling authority of accreditation.
There is no United States Federal government regulation of public primary schools. The schools are usually regulated by the states (see resources below). School districts can have a say in the satisfaction of goals for homeschooling and issue diplomas that way.
This website has every state with multiple links to licensing and accreditation information: http://www2.ed.gov/about/contacts/state/index.html
For non-government information about starting your own school, the Alternative Education Resource Organization is a good place to start: http://www.educationrevolution.org/store/resources/alternatives/
When we license the One Community education program we will also add here for those interested in replicating it our complete step-by-step process, copies of all forms filled out, anything we learned from our process, and a detailed guide for making your process even easier than ours.
A school may decide to become a part of a private organization or defined education paradigm where there will be a need to obtain recognition as a certified school through those programs. Many private schools become affiliated with a larger more global organization, choosing one that relates at least in part to the philosophical approach of their institution.
Here are some example links and resources for private and independent licensing and accreditation information. Internet searches for a specific philosophy or educational focus can turn up many more:
Vocational licenses such as teaching credentials, pilot licenses, law credentials, etc. all have their own industry standards. Some require government licenses and others a test or other performance-based assessment. For an individual to achieve their personal goals, the requirements of their profession should be defined and built into their education process.
The closest thing to an internationally agreed upon academic achievement accreditation system in the International Baccalaureate. Recognition of accreditation in IB can be individual or institutional issued diplomas.
One Community is providing this licensing and accreditation page so that institutions and individuals involved in the education process will have the information and resources they need to achieve validity for their programs. In addition, this page offers ways to get the necessary licensing and or accreditation in order to provide students with any required diplomas, test results, licenses or other data so they can pursue further education or job opportunities in other institutions within the global environment. The intent is to provide open source and free-shared education resources that can be used in homeschooling, traditional schooling, private schooling environments, or included as part of self-replicating teacher/demonstration communities, villages, and cities to be built around the world. When we license the One Community education program we will also add here for those interested in replicating it our complete step-by-step process, copies of all forms filled out, anything we learned from our process, and a detailed guide for making your process even easier than ours.
Q: Does One Community plan to license their program to others?
No, One Community’s program is open source and free-shared under the guidelines of our Terms and Conditions.
Q: If I homeschool or unschool how do I determine if my student(s) need a diploma?
This decision will be based on the direction of the learner. If they want to participate in a global arena where diplomas, test scores, and licenses are required then they should get a diploma.
Q: What if I obtain a license or diploma from one state or country then I move to a different one?
This depends on the field you are participating in and the requirements of the state/country you are moving to. Go to your state’s education page listed above.
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