Frequently Asked Questions
No, it is not required that private schools be accredited, but it is recommended by the Texas Private Schools Association. All accredited private schools are listed at www.tepsac.org. If a school is no longer accredited or is no longer open, it will still be listed with a line through it. Accreditation ensures that the private school is meeting standards that are equivalent to or greater than those of public schools. The process is very similar to accreditation for colleges and universities.
There are currently 17 accrediting commissions recognized in Texas. They are listed with contact information at www.tepsac.org.
No, private schools are not covered under the IDEA law. However, it does not take a federal directive to do what is right for children. Private schools operate under contract law which ensures that parents are aware of what is being offered for their child at the beginning of the school year and allows for legal recourse if this contract is broken. Children with special needs are very well served in private schools of their choosing. 75% of all private schools serve children with some type of special needs and there are 51 private schools that specifically serve children with special needs.
Teachers in accredited private schools are degreed and highly qualified. This allows private schools to hire PhDs in a subject area to teach that subject without requiring teacher certification.
Private schools are the most accountable type of educational setting because they have to attract parents willing to pay tuition for a service that is provided to the general public for free. Parents are also able to withdraw their child from the school if they are unsatisfied. This is the ultimate accountability. However, accreditation in private school operates the same way it works in colleges and universities and ensures that child’s education is equivalent to or greater than that provided in public school so that the parents can rest assured that the school is focused on educational excellence each and every day.
The median tuition statewide is $7,921.75 based on data from the 2016-2017 school year.