The National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association has become the first association to receive accreditation from AdvancED. The initial Accreditation came in February of 2011 after the NIAAA hosted a review team in December of 2010 at the national conference. Subsequent to that review and recommendation from the team, in early February, the AdvancED board of directors granted the NIAAA accreditation status for five years. Achieving this status has provided significant positive implications for the organization, its member state associations, individual members and our college partners. Everyone in the NIAAA family is extremely proud of this achievement. It is an accomplishment that is owned by every member of the association. In December of 2015, the NIAAA again hosted an AdvancED review team at the national conference. Subsequent to that review, the NIAAA Accreditation status has been renewed for another five years through 2020.
With the granting and subsequent renewal of accreditation the NIAAA has been given the same pedigree as Career, Technical and Post-Secondary Institutions. The association has been awarded a mark of quality and distinction by AdvancED. It validates that the NIAAA has demonstrated the ability to meet and exceed national and international standards of excellence. Accreditation is an affirmation of and gives credibility to all programs administered by the association. The association has made a commitment to continuous improvement and quality assurance of its programs and professional services through accountability, continuous self-study and assessment. It demonstrates the NIAAA’s commitment to the strong learning community that has been developed and fostered through the LTI and Certification programs. It highlights the NIAAA resolve to quality in every program the association administers.
What are the benefits to the NIAAA, its member state associations and the individual members? As mentioned previously, the educational programs of the association are elevated to a status equal to that of other Career, Technical and Post-Secondary Institutions. College partners are assured that the NIAAA materials being used in the college curriculum are of equal quality and standard as any other materials being used. As a member of an accredited institution, state athletic administrator associations would enjoy an elevated status within the state’s educational community. State Departments of Education would be compelled to grant “Continuing Education Credits” to individuals who have completed Leadership Training institute classes. The association’s Certification Program will gain recognition and reputation as the premier credentialing for interscholastic athletic administrators. Many more school districts will include NIAAA certification as a job requirement and provide financial enhancements for athletic administrators who achieve certification. More states will recognize NIAAA Certification as the paramount acceptable credentialing and/or certification program for interscholastic athletic administrators.
One of the greatest benefits of accreditation is that the NIAAA is now a member of the global community of accredited educational institutions recognized throughout the education community. The NIAAA will have access to Technical Assistance, Peer Review and Support, Research Based Educational Products and Services and a Worldwide Research Network.
Finally, accreditation requires the NIAAA to conduct an on-going self-study including data gathering from stakeholders and analysis by leadership to assure continuous improvement of the association and its programs. The NIAAA will become a better association as a result of the accreditation status granted by AdvancED.