Return to Headlines

Gwinnett County Public Schools Retains Prestigious Cognia Accreditation

May 13, 2022

     Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) announced today that it has retained the prestigious accreditation by Cognia™, sharing the full report of the five-year review. Cognia is a nonprofit organization that provides quality assurance for schools and districts, and the education service provider shared the results of the review at a special called board meeting this morning.

     “After a detailed evaluation process, Gwinnett County Public Schools is proud to have maintained its accreditation status from Cognia in this most recent five-year review, and we will focus on those areas that were noted as improving, not yet impacting, by Cognia standards,” said Dr. Calvin J. Watts, Superintendent. “This review is timely as we finalize our strategic plan, Blueprint for the Future, which will address the recommendations from Cognia’s review team. We are committed to improving and sustaining high-quality student learning, while improving effectiveness and efficiency throughout our district. Though we are not perfect, this report provides evidence that we are making perfect progress.”

     As part of the accreditation announcement and review, Dr. Andre Harrison, vice president of Cognia, shared a high-level overview of the process, standards, findings, and focus areas for GCPS based on this review.  Dr. Harrison praised the board and the superintendent team for transparency and “choosing to get the information out as soon as possible.”  Reviewing and sharing the findings with stakeholders is one of the noted next steps from the report, which is now available on the GCPS website.

     A second report from Cognia was also released today from GCPS; this report summarizes the findings of a March 2022 Monitoring Review of the district’s progress toward addressing the Cognia Performance Standards, Improvement Priorities, Directives, and Recommendations from the Special Review held on June 13-17, 2021. The Cognia accreditation findings for this review concluded that GCPS “has met Standard 1.4 and Standard 1.5. The district is complimented for its progress and commitment to meeting the accreditation standards on behalf of all learners in the district.”

     Cognia is a global, nonprofit improvement organization dedicated to helping institutions and other education providers grow learners, educators, and leaders. Cognia offers accreditation and certification, assessment, and professional services within a framework of continuous improvement. Serving 36,000 public and private institutions from early learning through high school in more than 85 countries, Cognia brings a global perspective to advancing teaching and learning. Find out more at

    Gwinnett County Public Schools is the largest school district in the state of Georgia and the 11th largest in the country, serving over 180,000 students in 141 schools. The district is among the most diverse in the nation, as part of Gwinnett County, which is the 7th most diverse county in the United States.