The Committee on Public Elementary and Middle Schools (CPEMS), through the work and consensus of its member schools, offers a set of Standards for Accreditation which include the essential aspects of schooling for elementary and middle schools in New England. The Standards provide guidance to assess the school's focus on teaching and learning, evaluate the quality of their programs and activities, and identify their strengths and needs.
Though NEASC does not accredit programs serving students below the age of three, the Commission on Public Schools interacts with pre-schools and pre-school programs through CPEMS's K-8 accreditation process. Pre-schools’ faculties are encouraged to participate in the school accreditation process using the Standards as a guide. In this manner, pre-school programs in and of themselves are not accredited, but the school which houses the pre-school is permitted to extend the range of its accreditation to Pre-K. For example: a K-5 school that wishes its pre-school program to be included in the accreditation process will be accredited PreK-5. Pre-school programs, up to this point, have not been treated as stand-alone units.