NAIS Exposed

What you should know

"You’ve probably never heard of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), but you need to know about it. NAIS is the driving force behind the radical racial and gender programming that has captured most K-12 private schools (called “independent” schools) across the country, particularly the elite schools that feed higher education, journalism, politics, and government." In his article from LegalInsurrection.comPaul Rossi continues to provide background about NAIS's extreme focus on equity and justice and the scope of its influence over independent schools. 

The article goes into more detail about the curriculum changes, declining standards, and homogenization of previously unique independent schools; Paul Rossi promises to share critical updates, guide readers through the impact of DEI, and share how all of this impacts the well-being of children.

Who does NAIS claim to be?

National Association of Independent Schools

NAIS | 

NAIS is a "nonprofit membership association that provides services to more than 1,900 schools and associations of schools in the United States and abroad, including more than 1,600 independent private K-12 schools in the U.S."[4] On their website, the mission statement reads, "As the largest association of independent schools, NAIS co-creates the future of education by uniting and empowering [its] community. They do this through thought leadership, research, creation and curation of resources, and direct collaboration with education leaders."[5]

NAIS also "provide[s] quality assurance and accountability for the accreditation programs of its independent school member associations" through ICAISA. Accreditation is a credentialing process by which schools verify they meet certain academic and institutional standards.

Who are they really?

Compelling dependency

Independent Schools are actually dependent schools​. There is no independent thinking or operating, particularly as it relates to DEI. These schools depend on insecure parents, horrible public-school alternatives, the college placement lottery, whims and dollars of donors, and most damaging, the harmful accreditation system and the NAIS echo chamber.

Negative and divisive

NAIS has used its position to set a highly politicized social justice agenda and uses the accreditation process to distribute the content to all the “independent” schools who then administer the social justice “plan” through the DEI offices

Unintellectual

NAIS doesn’t hold the content they deliver, or those that “teach” it, to any measurable standards — facts and scholarship are blatantly missing, and qualifications/expertise to develop others largely rests on “lived experiences."

Imposing political agendas

NAIS's objectives are clear: to tear down the schools and install social justice activists in leadership positions that can influence and drive school decisions and strategy. 

Stranglehold

One might ask if the very nature of the accreditation process could potentially create a system where schools feel pressure to adopt the accreditor's priorities in order to benefit from its resources. Most states don’t require independent schools to be accredited.

Echo chamber

Accreditor leadership is comprised of current/former heads of school, school board members, and other school administrators, which can create a conflict of interest. It can also create an echo chamber of ideas, which stifles free and diverse thought. 

Secret society

Accreditors play an integral, overarching role in helping schools uphold their missions and create strategic plans for growth. As a result, they hold the power to influence school culture by providing professional development, conferences, speakers, and other valuable resources to their member schools. How do accreditors assess curricular rigor and relevance?

What this means for schools

Reconsider membership

Schools are not required to be NAIS members, and not all states require schools to be accredited. If schools are to get back on track, one of the first steps may be to defect from NAIS (not renew membership). How do I know if my school is a member of NAIS? Visit the NAIS Directories page to find out. 

The duty of trustees

Most Trustees are derelict in their duties. We are amazed at how many Trustees are unaware or in denial of what is happening broadly in education and even at their own schools, which makes them complicit. There must be accountability for bad governance. 

Questionable standards

Schools have prioritized social justice “plans” over training teachers to help students develop and excel at the core skills needed to succeed. Have standards been lowered? DEI offices are “hammers looking for nails.” Eliminating DEI offices would free up resources to ensure that all students reach their potential. 

Encourage viewpoint diversity

Schools (and accreditors) need to take a principled stand in favor of free speech and encourage diversity of thought. One way to accomplish this is by adopting a free speech policy. Schools must create, promote, and honor their own versions of the Chicago Statement (see excerpt below), which will compel institutions to protect the free expression rights of students, faculty, staff, and parents. The Chicago Statement is a free speech policy statement produced by the Committee on Freedom of Expression at the University of Chicago in January 2015. 

“Because “the school” is committed to free and open inquiry in all matters, it guarantees all members of the “school” community the broadest possible latitude to speak, write, listen, challenge, and learn. . . [I]t is not the proper role of the “school” to attempt to shield individuals from ideas and opinions they find unwelcome, disagreeable, or even deeply offensive.” [7]

—Excerpt from the Chicago Statement

Student workshops and professional development

Schools must commit to engaging presenters who represent diverse viewpoints to speak to faculty, parents, and students. Students and educators need to hear from a variety of voices to provide much-needed balance. Schools need to prioritize professional development in this area, so teachers have the tools to facilitate class discussions and promote thinking, civility,  humility, and intellectual honesty.

Want to learn more?

What is accreditation?

Break down the basics of the accreditation process on our Accreditation 101 page.

All about AISNE

Learn about The Association of Independent Schools in New England.

What is NEASC?

Learn about the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. 

Our communication with accreditors

In an effort to make our voices heard, Parents Unite has begun corresponding with local and national accrediting agencies, including AISNE (The Association of Independent Schools in New England), NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges), and ICAISA (International Council Advancing Independent School Accreditation).  We hope you will show your support by filling out the form below the letter. And don't worry, we'll never share your name publicly without your consent.

May 11

Open Letter from Parents Unite to Accreditors (AISNE, NEASC, and ICAISA)

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May 14

Joint response from AISNE, NEASC, and ICAISA

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May 21

Parents Unite to Accreditors

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June 7

Accreditors to Parents Unite

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