International Accreditation Process: Step by Step Guide

Please note that due to the cost of international accreditations the school will be visited on one occasion, usually for two days, and samples of documentation required in form S2a need to be provided electronically (on a CD, or sent through online file transferring platforms  such as dropbox/wetransfer) together with photographs of the setting.

How the accreditation process works: (it  takes approximately six months).

STEP 1. Expression of Interest

Complete an International Expression of Interest form and email it to Michele Dows-Miller at meab@montessori.org.uk Indicate when you might like to have your visit.  Include the £50 registration fee with your Expression of Interest form.

STEP 2. Preparation of Schools Form (S1)

Start working with your team on revisiting your Montessori values and practice and complete the self-evaluation Schools Form S1. This form will give the assessor information about your school and how you operate.

The ‘How to Prepare’ page of this section offers valuable guidance on this part of the process.

STEP 3. Submit Schools Form (S1), Prepare for Visit by Assessor

When you have submitted your S1 (include the required information on form S2a and the photographs of your school) the Accreditation Officer  will liaise with MEAB assessors and your setting to set a date for your visit.  The accreditation fee must be included with the S1.

When the date of the visit is finalized, the MEAB office will organise the travel arrangements for the visit and inform the setting accordingly. The travel cost must be settled by the setting prior to the visit commencing. The setting is also responsible for making accommodation arrangements for the assessors, these arrangements must be notified to the MEAB office prior to the visit commencing.

The assessor(s) will contact you prior to the visit to introduce him/herself and to confirm the final travel and accommodation arrangements and finalize the details of the visit.

STEP 4.   Accreditation Visit

The assessor will  spend more than one day in your setting; in particularly large settings you may have two assessors. They will observe, talk to children, parents, owner, manager and staff. They will also look at your documents.

At the end of the visit they will give you feedback. You can decide who will sit in on the feedback. They will make verbal recommendations to you during this feedback.

STEP 5. Assessor’s Report

After the visit the assessor will write the Final Report, which will include recommendations. This will be emailed to you to check its factual accuracy. You will need to return this report to the Accreditation Officer  within two weeks of receiving it.

STEP 6. Assessor’s Report Monitoring

This report will be read several times before it is presented to the Report Monitoring Group (RMG). This group  scrutinises all reports for consistency of content and presentation. Once agreed by the RMG, the report will then be sent to you for your final comment on its factual accuracy and proof read.

STEP 7. Accreditation Awarded

The report will remain private and confidential and will not be ready for circulation to your parents until you receive final validation by the Montessori Evaluation and Accreditation Board who meet twice yearly. You will be notified of the date of the next meeting.

Once the accreditation has been validated by MEAB you will receive a copy of your Final Report. The report will be included on this website and linked to the schools entry on the MSA database.

You and your team will be invited to the next MEAB awards to receive your accreditation certificate and celebrate your achievement.

The MEAB accreditation is normally valid for four years and you will be contacted three months prior to the accreditation expiring to invite you to prepare for re-accreditation. Where a school provides an education which broadly follows the principles of the Montessori approach and environment but has not met fully the recommendation(s), the accreditation period will be for one year.

Applying for accreditation does not guarantee validation by the MEAB Board.

It will take approximately six months between the MEAB office receiving your S1 form and the Final Report being published following its validation by the MEAB Board.

Receiving accreditation carries the expectation that settings will continue to develop and to work on the issues highlighted in the accreditation reports, and will remain committed to working with MEAB.