DECIDING ON A RECOGNITION OPPORTUNITY
Programs may begin quality improvement processes with any opportunity for which they qualify based on the stated criteria. No opportunity is a prerequisite for the next.
One of the first critical decisions to make is which opportunity for recognition is most appropriate for your program. The decision to seek COA After School Recognition should be made with the full knowledge that a commitment of resources - financial and personnel - will be necessary. Some of these recognition opportunities will also necessitate a willingness to conduct a program self assessment that examines the program's capacity in regard to its activities and content, administration and human resources.
In deciding, please consider the following:
Below are brief outlines of each recognition opportunity. Please use the links to the left to review additional information regarding Accreditation, Certification and Registration.
AFTER SCHOOL ACCREDITATION was developed for programs that would like to fully implement COA's After School Quality Standards. Accreditation is the highest and most comprehensive recognition opportunity and is available to programs of every size. Programs achieving Accreditation will have demonstrated the full implementation of COA's After School Quality Standards. Essential components of Accreditation include an observational site visit by a specially trained endorser(s) as well as the assignment of a COA After School Coordinator to assist the program throughout the process. Accreditation is valid for four (4) years.
Criteria for application: Any individual program, or organization with multiple programs where only after school services are being accredited (this is inclusive of after school, before school, mid day and summer programs), may apply.
Programs are accredited independent of other programs within the same organization.
Except in extraordinary circumstances programs accredited by NAA are required to pursue Accreditation, and cannot apply for Registration or Certification.
Note: A waiver can be requested for a program to apply for Certification in lieu of Accreditation, and will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
After School accreditation is designed for those programs that have a robust and dynamic after-school program. Accreditation involves both a Self Study report as well as an endorser site visit.
After School Accreditation Costs:
for a 2-day/1-night visit)*
Please note that there is also an annual Maintenance of Accreditation (MOA) fee of $200 per year.
*Site visits requiring a 2-day/1-night visit will incur a flat-rate fee of $1,100 per Endorser. Site Visits requiring a longer stay may incur a flate-rate of $1,750 per Endorser per 3-day/2-night visit, and a fee of $550 per day per Endorser for each additional overnight required. If the total cost of the site visit exceeds the site-visit flat-rate fee by 10%, COA will bill the additional costs to the Program. Rates noted are for travel within the Continental US. Travel outside of the Continental US will include additional charges.
AFTER SCHOOL CERTIFICATION was developed for after school programs that would like to be certified for their demonstration of COA's After School Quality Standards. Certification provides programs that choose not to seek Accreditation with a process to expand their capacity and quality. Working with COA staff, the program submits a self-study that is reviewed by a specially trained endorser. An observational visit is not required. Certification is valid for three (3) years.
Criteria for application: Any individual after school program, or after school program that is part of a larger organization or entity with multiple programs/services where only an individual after school program is being certified (this is inclusive of after school, before school, mid day and summer programs), may apply.
Programs are certified independent of other programs within the same organization, and must meet one of the criteria below:
After School Certification is most suited for mid-size programs that are committed to enhancing performance outcomes and are able to devote the staff and resources to prepare a self-study report. Certification involves developing performance and quality improvement goals that involve a wide range of stakeholders.
After School Certification Costs:
Please note that there is also an annual Maintenance of Accreditation (MOA) fee of $200.
AFTER SCHOOL REGISTRATION was developed for after school programs that would like to reflect their commitment to promoting COA's After School Quality Standards. Registration provides small and start-up after school programs and opportunity to reflect their commitment to promote COA's After school Quality Standards. Registration is a three (3) year progressive process designed to demonstrate a program's continuing capacity for positive outcomes.
Criteria for application: A program, or organization with multiple programs where only after school services are being registered (this is inclusive of after school, before school, mid day and summer programs), may apply.
Programs must be registered independent of other programs within the same organization and meet one of the criteria below:
After School Registration consists of a three (3) year progressive process designed to demonstrate the continuing capacity building of a program. A program applies annually and may submit documentation for the following year. This, however, will not impact the length of the recognition, nor the fee structure.
Registration is most appropriate for programs that have never been accredited and would like to begin the process of strengthening their programs through the implementation of nationally established after school standards. It is hoped that programs that apply for After School Registration will begin to familiarize themselves with both COA's after school standards and process. In so doing, programs will have an opportunity to prepare themselves so that they can apply for certification or accreditation in the coming years.
After School Registration Costs: