Founded in 1885, the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc., (NEASC) is the nation's oldest accrediting association, serving more than 2,000 public and independent schools, colleges and universities in the states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island,  Vermont, and American/international schools in more than sixty nations worldwide. It is characterized by a commitment to establishing and maintaining high standards for all levels of education (preK-to doctoral level) within one association. Since 1990, it remains the only one of the nation's six accrediting agencies to promote collaborations for educational improvement beyond the region.   

Through the office of the President/CEO, the Association contributes to public policy and conducts research with a variety of national and international groups and  develops assessment processes for other educational providers.

Accreditation relies on a voluntary, peer review process engaging educators in the region on hundreds of reviews in any year.  A self-study process of 12-18 months is undertaken by schools and colleges in regular review cycles. The goals are effectiveness, improvement and public assurance. 

The New England Association of Schools and Colleges is an advocate of educational quality and its improvement. Drawing upon its considerable experience, it serves as a public policy resource on issues related to the condition of education in New England and in the international school communities it serves. It sustains and advances the principles of self-regulation and peer review.