Grey Nun Academy Awarded Middle States Re-Accreditation Using Sustaining Excellence Protocol


The Academy is Recognized for Using Strategic Planning and Action Research as Vehicles for Growth and Improvement in Student Performance

May 22, 2018 -- Yardley, PA -- Grey Nun Academy, the only independent, Catholic, coeducational lower and middle school in Bucks County, PA, is pleased to announce it has earned a seven-year re-accreditation from the the Middle States Association Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS), the gold standard for measuring and advancing school improvement.

The Academy earned its re-accreditation using the Association’s Sustaining Excellence protocol that uses strategic planning and action research as vehicles for growth and improvement in student performance and in the school’s capacity to effect that growth. The protocol, developed by the Middle States Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA‐CESS) of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, links various planning and school growth and improvement efforts to effect even higher levels of student performance.

“Reaffirming our accreditation the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS) is another proud moment for Grey Nun Academy. Accreditation with MSA-CESS is a vital means of communicating to the internal and external communities the exceptional level of education we provide at Grey Nun Academy,” said Deborah Kost, Head of School. “It affirms what we have known all along - that the Academy offers a superior academic environment for our students. Accreditation through MSA-CESS is not only an independent validation of the great work we do, it is also a process that informs strategic planning, curriculum design and collaboration. We are pleased to share our success with the Grey Nun Academy and greater Bucks County communities, especially our teachers, parents, students, alumni, Sisters and Board members who worked so hard to make this possible. This accreditation is a symbol of the promise of our future.”

Sustaining Excellence provides an accreditation protocol option for schools that can demonstrate their efficacy, over time, in producing the levels of student performance that are desired and expected by their community of stakeholders and are recognized as ʺleading schools.ʺ Leading schools are those schools that are achieving high levels of student performance, have an excellent understanding of the necessary antecedents for those results, and are likely to continue achieving those high results over time.

“Middle States accreditation impels school leaders to look beyond test scores and other data to make meaningful and sustainable improvement in student achievement,” said Henry G. Cram, Ed.D., president of MSA-CESS. “Accredited schools demonstrate a commitment to achieving excellence and to cultivating an environment for continued growth that involves the entire school community.”

Accreditation is a multifaceted evaluation process that schools and school systems voluntarily use to demonstrate they are meeting a defined set of research-based performance standards. The 12 Middle States Standards for Accreditation are: mission; governance and leadership; school improvement planning; finances; facilities; school organization and staff; health and safety; educational program; assessment and evidence of student learning; student services; student life and activities, and information resources.

Named “Best Private School” in the 2017 Bucks County Courier Times “Best Of” contest, “Most Loved” Private School in 2017 by Hulafrog, and a three-time Finalist for “Best Private School” in the Bucks Happening contest,Grey Nun Academy is the only dual-accredited elementary school in Bucks County, holding both an MSA-CESS accreditation and an AdvancED accreditation.

About Middle States Association Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS

Based in Philadelphia, the Middle States Association is the worldwide leader in accreditation and school improvement. For over 125 years, Middle States has been helping school leaders establish and reach their goals, develop strategic plans, promote staff development and advance student achievement. With more than 2,500 accredited schools and school systems in 34 states and over 100 countries, MSA-CESS is proud of its continuing legacy and its ongoing innovations to meet the challenges of improving education in the 21st century. For more information visit

About Grey Nun Academy

Founded in 1963 by the Grey Nuns of the Sacred Heart, Grey Nun Academy is an independent, Catholic, coeducational, Lower (PreK-5) and Middle school (6-8) in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. The Academy's mission is to offer an academically rich curriculum that meets the unique needs of individual students while respecting the rights, interests, and dignity of each child. Grey Nun Academy is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and dually accredited by Middle States Association and AdvancED. The Academy welcomes children of all faiths and cultures. The school's educational process leads children to embrace and promote peace and social justice in our world. To learn more, please visit or call 215-968-4151.