TAMPA — The whole process started in mid-March at the Hillel Academy. It was time to assess the school’s entire program and welcome an accreditation team to the school.
It was a tense time, but when the team from the Florida Council of Independent Schools — FCIS — arrived, Hillel was ready.
Only schools that achieve the tough standards that cover every part of campus life are admitted. According to Director of Marketing Jody Sherman, to be accredited by FCIS means meeting every standard including proven financial stability and providing a quality education. All facets of health and safety are reviewed. FCIS spent two days visiting. The Hillel administration and staff spent the last six months preparing for the visit.
The visits are conducted on a five-year evaluation cycle and are led by a committee of peer educators.
Eileen Kanter, of the Hillel Board of Trustees, said she knew Hillel had done its best.
“Compliments by the evaluation team included faculty and staff are outstanding educators in their fields of study. Our Head of School is passionate about Hillel,” she said. “The progress in integrating technology is felt throughout the school. The team was amazed to see how well our faculty utilizes the open space concept in our buildings to engage learning.”
Results were announced at the June 2014 FCIS Board meeting. Hillel Academy underwent a renovation to its physical plant and infrastructure from 2010 through 2012 with the goal of accommodating additional students. The day school facility was designed to enhance project-based learning and small group teaching. All grade levels take advantage of both traditional classrooms and the open spaces throughout the campus.