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School Membership Criteria

Applications to join AASSA will be considered according to the following criteria:

  • The school is located in Latin America or the Caribbean.
  • The school has received formal accreditation from a recognized U.S. regional accrediting agency or from the Council of International Schools and has been in existence for a minimum of five years. Schools are required to maintain current accreditation in good standing.
  • The school uses English as the primary language of instruction.
  • The school follows an American/international curriculum.
  • The school has a Child Protection Policy and is engaged in ongoing training regarding best Child Protection practices.
  • The school is led by a Chief Administrative Officer on site.
  • The school publishes in full public disclosure, their mission, programs and practices, and aligns with best practices of AASSA member schools.
  • The school adheres to ethical governance with fiduciary structures in place.
  • The school complies with the AASSA Code of Ethics for Member Schools (see below).
  • The school is aligned and committed to the mission and purposes of AASSA, including active participation in AASSA professional development events.  


School Membership Levels

AASSA has two school membership levels - Full Membership and Distinguished Membership.

The Invitational Membership level will be phased out by June 30, 2019 and current Invitational Members will be invited to join as either Distinguished Level or Full Members or to purchase services at the non-member rate, beginning July 1, 2019.

Non-members will not be able to access or utilize AASSA Recruiting Services. However, they will have access to other AASSA Services, such as purchasing services, payment processing services, and professional development, at non-member fee rates.

The following are levels of school membership to AASSA:

●       Full Membership

Contributions and Benefits:

Full Members will have access to the AASSA Recruiting Fair, as well as to other AASSA services and programs at reduced member fees. Full Members will have access to other member schools through AASSA events and services. AASSA will, in turn, expect Full Members to take an active role in participating in programs, conferences, Professional Development events, reading the AASSA blog, and providing relevant feedback.


●       Distinguished Membership

Contributions and Benefits:

Distinguished Members will receive all of the benefits for Full Membership listed above. In addition, they will be recognized as an AASSA Distinguished Member in AASSA publications, be highlighted for their contributions on the AASSA blog and AASSA Radio, will be given preferential seating at the AASSA Recruiting Fair and will be invited to provide input in planning Heads of School Retreats and professional development events. AASSA will in turn, expect Distinguished Members to take an active role in participating in programs, conferences, Professional Development events, reading the AASSA blog and providing relevant feedback. Distinguished Schools receive 2 free AASSA event registrations per year. Additional benefits and services will be determined with feedback from Distinguished Member schools. 


AASSA Code of Ethics for Member Schools 

The Association of American Schools in South America (AASSA) is founded for the exclusive purpose of “discovering and developing ways and means for improving understanding through international education” (AASSA Constitution). Inherent in this is the need for all members to operate within acceptable ethical standards within its organization and in dealings with member schools as outlined below. In order to remain AASSA members in good standing, these ethical standards must be adhered to. If it comes to the attention of AASSA that the guidelines have been breached, AASSA can take investigative action that may result dismissal from AASSA.

Integrity of the School

  1. A school should meticulously carry out contracts made with any person, school, organization, or the general public.
  2. A school should present accurate information about their mission, their fundamental values, and their current situation or status in order to avoid misleading stakeholders or the general public.
  3. A school should respect normally accepted conventions regarding confidentiality.
  4. A school is required to have a current Child Protection Policy (recently revised/reviewed within the past three years) and incorporated into the operational procedures of the school. (Applying schools must provide a copy of their current policy.)

Recruitment/Employment Practices

  1. Member schools’ recruitment practices must reflect those outlined in the AASSA Recruitment Standards and standards agreed upon by the major recruitment agencies. For example, contracts with faculty members/administrators should include a clause in which prospective employees certify that they are legally able to sign the contract and are not bound by any other employment contract.
  2. All employment contracts from the school should include a clause which states that upholding the safeguarding of children is a requirement.
  3. All faculty members/administrative staff shall be employed under written contracts, which provide for adequate salaries, fringe benefits, and working conditions. Contracts should be in compliance with local labor laws as required.
  4. Member schools should not attempt to influence a person to break a contract, verbal commitment, or binding agreement already made with another school.
  5. Member schools should not actively solicit students from another school or their employees unless the individual has made application and express their availability.
  6. Schools should have a transparent and accessible means to deal with claims by employees for unfair or unethical treatment or violation of an employee’s rights. As such, schools must provide a copy of their policy for grievance resolution.  

Employment Practices  

  1. The performance of professional personnel should be subject to regular evaluation, formal or informal, by the head of the school or his/her designated representatives.
  2. The performance of the head of the school should be subject to regular evaluation, formal, or informal, by the Board, a designated committee of the Board, or the owner of the school.
  3. In any instance in which a school has taken the decision to dismiss a faculty member/administrator or not to renew his/her contract, the faculty member/administrator should be given a fair period of notice and the reasons for the school's decision. If the faculty member/administrator requests it, a hearing should be provided in accordance with established school policy.

Date of Adoption by Board of Trustees:  December 5, 2018 

Please click here to submit an
online application for
AASSA School Membership


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