National Honor Society
The National Honor Society (NHS) is the nation's premier organization established to recognize outstanding high school students. More than just an honor roll, NHS serves to recognize those students who have demonstrated excellence in the areas of scholarship, leadership, service, and character. These characteristics have been associated with membership in the organization since its beginning in 1921.
Today, it is estimated that more than one million students participate in NHS activities. NHS chapters are found in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, many U.S. territories, and Canada. Chapter membership not only recognizes students for their accomplishments, but challenges them to develop further through active involvement in school activities and community service.
Important NHS National Constitution
Article I: Name and Purpose
- Section 1. The name of this organization shall be the National Honor Society of Secondary Schools (NHS).
- Section 2. The purpose of this organization shall be to create enthusiasm for scholarship, to stimulate a desire to render service, to promote leadership, and to develop character in the students of secondary schools.
- Section 3. NHS is a program of the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), 1904 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1537, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit association.
Article VIII: Membership
- Section 1. Membership in the local chapter is an honor bestowed upon a student. Selection for membership is by a Faculty Council and is based on out- standing scholarship, character, leadership, and service. Once selected, members have the responsibility to continue to demonstrate these qualities.
- Section 2. Membership shall be known as active, honorary, and alumni. Active members shall become alumni members at graduation. Alumni members shall have no voice or vote in chapter affairs.
- Section 3. The Faculty Council shall reserve the right to award honorary membership to school officials, principals, teachers, NHS advisers, adults, students with disabilities, or foreign exchange students in recognition of achievement and/or outstanding service rendered to the school in keeping with the purposes of the National Honor Society. Honorary members shall have no voice or vote in chapter affairs. (See Chapter 3 for additional commentary on Honorary Membership.)
- Section 4. Candidates become members when inducted at a special ceremony.
- Section 5. Members who are seniors in good standing are eligible to be nominated by their chapters to compete in the National Honor Society Scholarship program.
- Section 6. An NHS member who transfers to another school and brings a letter from the principal or chapter adviser to the new school adviser shall be accepted automatically as a member in the new schoolís chapter. Transfer members must meet the new chapterís standards within one semester in order to retain membership.
- Section 7. Members who resign or are dismissed are never again eligible for membership or its benefit
Article IX: Selection of Members
- Section 1. To be eligible for membership the candidate must be a member of those classes (sophomore, junior, senior) designated as eligible in the chapter bylaws. (Freshmen [ninth graders] are not eligible.) Candidates must have been in attendance at the school the equivalent of one semester.
- Section 2. The national minimum standard for scholarship shall be a cumulative scholastic average of at least 85 percent, B, or 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) or the equivalent standard of excellence. Candidates shall then be evaluated on the basis of service, leadership, and character.
- Section 3. The selection of each member to the chapter shall be by a majority vote of the Faculty Council. Prior to notification of any candidates, the chapter adviser shall review with the principal the results of the Faculty Councilís deliberations.
- Section 4. A description of the selection procedure shall be published in an official school publication that is widely available in a timely fashion to all students and parents of the school. The selection procedure shall be determined by the Faculty Council and shall be consistent with the rules and regulations of NHS.
- Section 5. NASSP shall not review the judgment of the Faculty Council regarding selection of individual members to local chapters.
Some candidates may be ineligible for induction because of the semester ruling. Many students, including students of military parents, are required to move with parents or guardians who have transferred in their work. The present school principal should seek a recommendation from the previous school principal or chapter adviser pursuant to the candidateís selection. On the basis of the recommendation from the previous school, the Faculty Council may waive the semester regulation.