St. Mary’s announces national AdvancED reaccreditation 

SMS Accredidation MAIN GRAPHIC


St. Mary’s Catholic School first received national accreditation by AdvancED in 2009. The school announced that its re-accreditation was officially confirmed in May, 2017.

“We’re proud of where St. Mary’s is as we move forward into the future,” said Interim Principal Andrea Harrell. We’ve continued to improve our process for accreditation so we can only get better from here.”

The process involves an AdvancED Leadership Team, made up of faculty members, that self assesses the instruction, culture, community of stakeholders and how well they all work together to meet the needs of the students.

“It was a real team effort from students, parents and community leaders to make this a successful achievement,” said Leadership Team member Ray Gandy, a 5th and 6th grade math teacher. Other team members included Michael Landry, Laura Friedel, Donnon Brian, Bob Lane and Krista Sklar.

Representatives from AdvancED paid an in-school visit to St. Mary’s in April. Offering a balanced, systemic approach combining standards, stakeholder feedback and student performance to measure quality programs, relationships and results, AdvancED’s systems-oriented Accreditation Process helps institutions make the most of their talents and resources. The process aligns accreditation with accountability, emphasizing learner outcomes when evaluating institutional quality.

The representatives recognized St. Mary’s on its variety of learning activities and the collaboration between all the school’s stakeholders.

“I think the school is in a really good place and we have a lot to offer our community and Natchitoches,” said Harrell. While the 139-year-old institution is thriving, Harrell said the faculty and administration will focus on providing more rigor in the classrooms.

The 2017-2018 school year has begun at St. Mary’s. For more information go online to