The 4 Top Certifications of Independent High Schools in Canada

Discover how certifications from international independent school associations provide proof of quality assurance and a measure of accountability for a private school

Choosing the best school for your child is a tall responsibility, as no school can be all things to all students. Independent private schools offer unique alternatives to the public system through such benefits as more individualized learning, a commitment to education of the whole person, a healthy and caring community environment and exceptional extracurricular opportunities.

Although part of the strength of independent schools is derived from their freedom to innovate above and beyond governmental standards, they also recognize the importance of some public measure of quality assurance. Accreditation from highly reputable independent school associations is a useful indicator of educational quality, a measure of accountability and a catalyst for continuous improvement. These associations hold member schools to rigorous standards while respecting the distinctive mission that is unique to each school.

Lakefield College School is honoured to have four respected certifications from top independent school associations from around the world. Learn how each of these associations represent and strengthen independent school education in Canada.

1. Canadian Accredited Independent Schools (CAIS)

Established in 1981, the Canadian Accredited Independent Schools (CAIS) is a community of independent schools who choose to meet and exceed rigorous National Standards that inspire continuous whole school improvement. Its over 90 member schools commit to implementing a “reflective and collaborative school improvement process, meet National Standards and participate in research and professional development.”

Key activities of the CAIS include coordinating conferences for educational leadership, benchmarking and advocacy. This national organization of independent schools has a respected seal of approval, representing its international standards of excellence.

2. The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS)

The Association of Boarding Schools is an international voice for independent boarding schools around the globe, promoting awareness and understanding about the benefits of learning and living in a residential setting. The voluntary membership organization includes nearly 300 boarding schools, offering support and direction while providing information about the boarding school experience.

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Certification is one way of demonstrating educational quality

It accomplishes these goals through an annual conference, various workshops for school administrators and faculty members, admission trips, a website and annual directory and initiatives such as a recent comparative study to determine the added value of boarding school.

3. National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)

Founded in 1963, NAIS represents more than 1,800 member independent schools and associations in the U.S. and internationally, offering research and trend analysis, leadership and governance guidance and professional development opportunities for school and board leaders. Membership in this non-profit organization promotes collective action on behalf of independent schools like Lakefield College School.

4. Round Square

Lakefield College School was the first Canadian member of Round Square, a worldwide association of approximately 60 schools that emphasizes community involvement, particularly through international service projects. Its vision is based on the theories of renowned educational philosopher Kurt Hahn, who believed that school was a time when children could learn about real human challenges that develop generosity, bravery, creativity and conflict resolution.

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LCS aims to develop the whole child – mind, body and spirit

True to the mission of our boarding and day high school, this approach encourages growth of the whole child—in mind, body and spirit. Children enrolled in Round Square schools can request exchange to any other school in another country for a semester at a time. Lakefield College School students put these ideals in action through inspiring international community projects, such as building infrastructure in underprivileged areas or working with impoverished youth.

Are you interested in learning more about the boarding school difference?

Explore Lakefield College School to discover how our independent high school in Canada develops the whole child.