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In March 1983, the State Board of Education approved the North Carolina Scholars Program to begin with the 1983-1984 school year. Revisions were made to the program again in March 1990 and August 2002 to make it more consistent with graduation requirements and to promote rigorous academic study. In July 2009, the State Board of Education revised the Academic Scholars Program requirements to bring them into alignment with Future Ready Core graduation requirements and incorporate options for innovative high schools. These requirements are in effect for students who enter the ninth grade for the first time in or after 2009-2010. Students who complete the requirements for an academically challenging high school program will be named North Carolina Academic Scholars and receive special recognition.


The students who qualify for this special recognition

  • will be designated by the State Board of Education as North Carolina Academic Scholars.
  • will receive a seal of recognition attached to their diplomas.
  • may receive special recognition at graduation exercises and other community events.
  • may be considered for scholarships from the local and state business/industrial community.
  • may use this special recognition in applying to post-secondary institutions. (Candidates are identified by the end of grade 11 and their candidacy can be included in application forms and/or transcripts sent to these institutions.)

Academic Scholars Program
(pdf, 112kb)