For those moving to a new location, it’s important to know what educational options are available. This chapter outlines the public schools system in Craven County along with information about local libraries and higher education. There are private schools, charter schools and home schooling available to children in the county as well.
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 take the following to the school office: proof of residence; the child’s birth certificate, immunization records, NC Health Assessment and previous school records; and a withdrawal form from the child’s previous school (if applicable). Check with the school for additional requirements. Required immunizations for a child enrolling in kindergarten are as follows: five doses of diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis; four doses of polio; three to four doses of haemophilus influenzae type B; two doses of measles, mumps and rubella; three doses of hepatitis B; and two doses of varicella. For more details on North Carolina’s minimum vaccine requirements for students in grades K-12, visit the North Carolina Health and Human Services Immunization Branch website at www.immunize.nc.gov.
In 2010, North Carolina, along with many other states, the District of Columbia, Guam, American Samoa, the Northern Mariana Islands, 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.
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.ncpublicschools.org/charterschools.
For an introduction to home schooling in North Carolina, visit the North Carolina Division of Non-Public Education website at www.ncadmin.nc.gov/citizens/home-school-information. Here you will find information on home-school requirements, standardized testing, resources and more.
North Carolinians for Home Education
4441 Six Forks Road, Suite 106, Box 144
Raleigh, NC 27609 844-624-3338
North Carolinians for Home Education is a private, volunteer organization serving home-schoolers in North Carolina. NCHE provides resources for home schooling families including curriculum resources, testing information and an athletic commission. For information on local home-school groups in Craven County, visit NCHE’s website.
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 www.nces.ed.gov/surveys/pss/privateschoolsearch. Users may search by location, religious affiliation, school type and more.
Choosing a School
Choosing the right school is 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 for school district 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 take 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 children: what they like 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.
Craven County Schools
3600 Trent Road
New Bern, NC 28562..................252-514-6300
The Craven County Schools district has 15 elementary schools, five middle schools and five high schools, as well as pre-K programs and evening high school education programs. The district covers about 695 square miles with a population of more than 100,000 residents.