State of North Carolina Private Grade K-12 School Requirements
Each conventional private elementary/secondary school in North Carolina enrolling students of North Carolina compulsory attendance
age (at least age 7 but not yet age 16) must in accordance with G.S. 115C-
- Report its name, address, and names of its chief administrator and owner(s) to the Division of Non-Public Education (DNPE).
It is suggested that this action be taken 30-60 days before the school begins initial operation.
Click here for a specific Notice of Intent form available for official use in providing this notification.
- Meet the fire, safety and sanitation standards established by state and local authorities.
All child care through grade 2 students must be housed on the ground floor. Prior to initial school occupancy, the local
building inspector must inspect the building(s) and issue to the school a certificate of occupancy for school usage.
Thereafter, he/she will need to inspect again only when structural changes are made to the building(s).
In addition, before initially beginning classes and annually thereafter, have
the local Fire Marshal and Health Department inspect the school facility. Allow up to possibly a month or more for the
inspections to be completed. Keep original inspector-completed forms on file at the school. Click here for a Fire Inspection Preparation Checklist. Click here for a Sanitation Inspection Preparation Checklist.
Also, see Inspections/On-Site Visits.
- Follow certain requirements to insure that the school buildings meet the
applicable asbestos regulations. To obtain information about these requirements, please contact:
Health Hazards Control Unit
North Carolina DHHS/Public Health
1912 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-1912
- Operate for a school term of at least nine calendar months on a regular schedule excluding reasonable holidays and
vacations. (DNPE strongly advises a school term of at least 180 school days; typical school days of at least 5 1/2 hours in
length; and, typical class periods for grade 9-12 students of 50 minutes each.)
- Keep accurate student attendance records on file at its office.
- Maintain current and accurate disease immunization records on file at its office for each pupil enrolled. All pupils
must be properly immunized with the required vaccine minimum dosages before entering kindergarten and grade 1. For information
about dosages required and the immunization laws, contact:
North Carolina DHHS
1917 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-1917
- Administer to all students in grades 3, 6 and 9 each school year, a nationally standardized achievement test in the subject
areas of English grammar, reading, spelling and math. Keep test results on file at the school for at least one calendar year
for annual review by a DNPE representative.
Also, see Testing FAQS.
- Administer to all grade 11 students each school year, a nationally standardized test which measures competencies in the verbal
and quantitative areas. Keep test results on file at the school for at least one calendar year for annual review by a DNPE
representative. Establish a minimum score on the test for high school graduation.
Also, see High School Graduation Requirement FAQS.
- Issue Driving Eligibility Certificates to its
age 15-17 students who are making progress toward graduation, exhibiting exemplary behavior and who request them in order to obtain their
North Carolina Learner's Permit/Driver's License.
Click here for North Carolina Non-Public School Student Driving Eligibility Requirements publication for further
- Provide industrial quality eye protective devices free of charge to students and teachers participating in shop or laboratory classes
involving hazardous materials as
mandated by G.S. 115C-166
168; and, require the students and teachers to wear the devices at all times when participating in such a program along with visitors
to such shops and laboratories while such programs are in progress.
- Notify DNPE upon termination of the school.
- Satisfy child care requirements which may apply IF a nursery or pre-kindergarten program is also operated. Child care requirements may be obtained from:
Division of Child Development
North Carolina DHHS
2201 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-2201
- Also, satisfy foster care requirements which may apply IF the school exists primarily to meet the special needs including
the education of "dependent, neglected, abused, abandoned, destitute, orphaned, undisciplined or delinquent children or other children,
who, due to similar problems of behavior or family conditions, are living apart from their parents, relatives or guardians in family foster
homes or residential care facilities." Foster care requirements may be obtained by contacting your county government social services
Questions? Visit our conventional school FAQ page.
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