Finding the right schools and educational opportunities for each family member is an important part of any move. This chapter outlines Onslow County’s public schools system, private schools, charter schools and home schooling criteria, as well as local libraries and higher education institutions. To be enrolled in a North Carolina school, a child must be at least 5 years old by Aug. 31 of the school year. Those wishing to register their child in school should bring the following to the school office: a birth certificate or other proof of the child’s age, and the child’s previous school records and immunization records. For more details on North Carolina’s minimum vaccine requirements for students in grades K-12, visit the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction’s website at www.dpi.state.nc.us or www.immunize.nc.gov/family/immnz_children.htm.
In 2010, North Carolina, along with the majority of other states, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Department of Defense Education Activity, adopted Common Core State Standards that provide a consistent set of educational expectations for students regardless of ZIP code. When a family moves, a student’s education is often disrupted because the student may be forced to repeat material or learn at a different level at the new school. With common standards across states, this disruption will be reduced — of particular interest to military families. At present, national Common Core State Standards exist only for English language arts and mathematics though North Carolina has state standards across the full curriculum. For more information, visit www.corestandards.org.
Choosing a School
Choosing the right school is very important, so be sure to research each one before deciding. Contact the school by phone or by visiting its website, which is a valuable source to learn about a school district’s statistics and curriculum. Talk to people in the area, especially friends and colleagues who already live there.
If the school shows promise, schedule a visit and bring a list of written questions about student-teacher ratios, computer availability, extracurricular activities, sports programs, music programs, gifted programs and grading standards.
Discuss the potential school with your child: what they liked and what they didn’t like. Your family’s ability to readily adapt to a move and to find happiness in your new home may depend, in part, on how happy your children are in their new school.
Charter schools are public schools of choice that are tuition-free, serve all students and have open enrollment. For more information or a listing of charter schools in North Carolina, visit the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction’s website at www.dpi.state.nc.us/charterschools.
For an introduction to home schooling in North Carolina, visit the North Carolina State Board of Education’s website at http://stateboard.ncpublicschools.gov/legal-affairs/resources-1/home-instruction. Here you will find information on home-school rules and regulations in North Carolina.
North Carolinians for Home Education
4441 Six Forks Road
Suite 106, Box 144
Raleigh, NC 27609 844-624-3338
Founded in 1984, North Carolinians for Home Education is a nonprofit, volunteer organization active at the state level, serving homeschoolers in North Carolina and beyond. Visit its website for home education resources and information on local support groups.
To search for local private schools in North Carolina, visit the National Center for Education Statistics website and use the private school search tool at https://tinyurl.com/ybhpwoyt. Users may search by location, religious affiliation, school type and more.
Camp Lejeune Community Schools
855 Stone St.
Camp Lejeune, NC 28547 910-451-2461
Camp Lejeune Community Schools has one primary school, three elementary schools, an intermediate school, a middle school and a high school. The schools are managed by the Department of Defense Education Activity’s Mid-Atlantic District and serve eligible students living on MCB Camp Lejeune and MCAS New River.
Camp Lejeune Community Schools have a half-day preschool program for children who are 4 years old by Sept. 1. Some 3-year-olds may qualify to attend if they have certain developmental delays. To register children in the DODEA school system, parents or guardians must reside in base housing or have a letter from the base housing office stating they will have base housing within 90 school days. Registration is conducted year-round at the school of attendance.
Onslow County Schools
200 Broadhurst Road
Jacksonville, NC 28540 910-455-2211
Onslow County Schools serve more than 26,000 students with an early childhood development center, 20 elementary schools, eight middle schools, eight high schools and one learning center.