Membership FAQs

We realize that making the decision to join NAIS is a big one. And it may be a decision made by your school’s whole leadership team, or even in consultation with your board. Here is information that can answer questions your team may have. Please feel free to contact us at membership@nais.org if we can help with any other questions.

Is NAIS membership a multi-year commitment?

No, you make a choice each year to renew your membership. During that year, our goal is to help you maximize your use of NAIS tools and resources so you find the most value in your membership. At the same time, we encourage you to see becoming part of the NAIS community as a long-term decision for your school–98% of our schools do when they renew their membership each year.

What tangible benefits will our school see when we become NAIS members?

Every individual – from the staff, faculty, and board – at an NAIS member school has access to benefits as soon as your school becomes a member. Visit the benefits page of our website to learn more.

Does NAIS membership matter to prospective families?

We believe it does. To families, the Proud NAIS member logo on your site or in your viewbook establishes the basics – you are accredited and you follow best practices. But it also says you are looking to be part of the advancement of the wider educational community.

What types of schools are NAIS members?

NAIS member schools are K-13 private, independent schools of all types and sizes around the country.

See a snapshot of our community.

How much does NAIS membership cost?

You can find our annual membership dues, and more information on membership requirements, here.

Our school is not accredited, but we would like to join NAIS. Can we still become a member?

Schools that are not accredited may join as Premium or NAIS Subscribers. NAIS also offers Candidate Membership to schools that are not yet accredited but are actively working toward it. As part of your application, you can indicate your progress toward achieving accreditation. To qualify for this category of membership, you must be working with one of NAIS's approved accrediting organizations–these are groups whose standards are well known to us.

Our school is for-profit. Can we still join NAIS?

Yes! For-profit schools may join as Premium or NAIS Subscribers.

Our school is already a member of our state/regional school association. Does this also make us a member of NAIS? 

No, NAIS membership is separate from your school’s membership with your state or regional association. 

On the NAIS membership application, what is meant by “nondiscrimination statements”?

NAIS requires that all member schools demonstrate a commitment to diversity in compliance with state and federal law, as evident in all nondiscrimination policies for admission and hiring. This means that a single-sex school can choose students on the basis of gender, for instance, or a school with a strong religious purpose can be true to that purpose in selecting students or faculty, so long as those policies are protected by law.

On the NAIS membership application, what is meant by "independent board of trustees"?

An independent board of trustees means that a school is governed by a self-perpetuating board charged with the fiduciary, strategic, and visionary duties to sustain the school. It operates with a governance structure with sufficient independence from other organizations or individuals so as to ensure its ability to fulfill its mission and to control its own destiny. Schools that do not have an independent board structure are welcome to apply as Premium or NAIS Subscribers.