Criteria for Membership

Membership Criteria

The purpose of the National Honor Society is fourfold:

to create enthusiasm for scholarship,

to stimulate a desire to render service,

to promote leadership,

to develop character.


Students selected as members of the National Honor Society must exemplify all four pillars as outlined in the National Handbook for National Honor Societies. No student is inducted simply because of high academic achievement.



Scholarship is the initial criterion used to identify students who are eligible for membership in the National Honor Society. To qualify, a student must be a Junior or Senior and have completed at least one semester at Kennard-Dale High School. The student must have achieved a cumulative GPA of a 3.900 or higher.   All high school grades, including those from previous high school(s) will be considered. Students achieving a GPA of 3.900 or higher will receive a letter informing them that they have met the academic requirement and inviting them to complete the Candidate Form. The Candidate Form is used to evaluate the additional three standards.


The student who serves:

  • Volunteers and provides dependable and well-organized assistance, and is willing to make sacrifices to offer assistance
  • Works well with others and is willing to take on difficult or inconspicuous responsibilities
  • Is willing to represent the class or school in interclass and interscholastic competition
  • Does committee and staff work without complaint
  • Participates in some outside activity: Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, church groups, volunteer services for the aged, poor or disadvantaged
  • Mentors in the community or students at other schools
  • Shows courtesy by assisting visitors, teachers and other students

Service Activity: A service activity is identified as an activity in school and/or in the community in which the student gives or has given his/her time to an activity that is useful, helpful and beneficial to others without any direct financial or material compensation. Service is required to be ongoing. The committee looks for continuity and quality as well as overall hours. Paid positions are jobs and DO NOT qualify.

Documentation: The successful candidate will have participated in a minimum of 30 hours of community service since the start of 9th grade, at least 15 of those hours within the last year. Both school and community related activities count towards the 30 hours. A maximum of 30% of service hours may be school service (as opposed to community service). There shall be a minimum of 2 different types of service. Service completed during the hours of school attendance are not eligible. Religious affiliated service is permitted as long as it is not part of a religious ceremony or service. The hours must be those of actual service and not attendance (i.e. mission trips will be awarded a maximum of 8 hours service per day). Candidates must submit their service hours by using the form found under the Service section of the National Honor Society page on the school website.


The student who exercises leadership:

  • Is resourceful in proposing new problems, applying principles and making suggestions
  • Demonstrates initiative in promoting school activities
  • Exercises positive influence on peers in upholding school ideals and spirit
  • Contributes ideas that improve the civic life of the school
  • Is able to delegate responsibilities
  • Inspires positive behavior in others
  • Demonstrates academic initiative
  • Successfully holds school offices or positions of responsibility; conducting business effectively and efficiently; demonstrates reliability and dependability
  • Is a leader in the classroom, at work, or in other school or community activities
  • Is thoroughly dependable in any responsibility accepted
  • LeadershipActivity: A leadership activity is one in which the student is able to express oneself and exert a positive guiding influence in or out of the classroom or as an officer in a group or organization. Leadership can be identified through elected offices held in school or community organizations. Leadership also exists outside elected positions including leadership roles with the classroom and effective participation in positions of responsibility in other activities offered on campus such as athletic team captains, section leaders in musical groups, committee chairs in student groups, etc. Leadership roles in both school and community may be considered, provided they can be verified.


Documentation: During grades 9 through 11 (or 12), the candidate is required to have demonstrated examples of leadership. Only those positions in which the student was directly responsible for directing or motivating others should be included. The student will list their leadership activities and give concrete examples, referencing the list of criteria above, which demonstrate their leadership. Sponsors of all activities listed must verify participation and that the student represented their leadership accurately by signing his/her name and providing a phone number at which they can be reached for confirmation. Verification is required and will be randomly checked for authenticity. Email correspondence, copies of certificates and other official documentation may be used in lieu of signatures that cannot be obtained from out of state or inaccessible sponsors.


Character The student of character:

  • Consistently exemplifies positive and desirable qualities of behavior (cheerfulness, friendliness, poise, stability)
  • Cooperates by complying with all school policies and regulations and codes of student conduct
  • Takes criticism willingly and accepts recommendations graciously
  • Demonstrates the highest standards of honesty, academic integrity, and reliability
  • Regularly exhibits courtesy, concern, and respect for others
  • Complies with instructions and rules, and displays personal responsibility

CharacterDefinition: A candidate will be able to demonstrate an outstanding record of conduct and behavior with regard to school and community rules, guidelines, and policies, or be able to demonstrate sufficient growth and improvement to compensate for previous inadequacies.


Documentation: According to the National Honor Society Honor Society Handbook, “A person of character demonstrates the following six qualities: trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, and citizenship.” The candidate will write a typed, one page maximum, essay explaining how they have personally demonstrated one to three of these six qualities. The candidate will also obtain the recommendation, form provided to the student, of three (3) current members of the faculty who can attest to their qualities as a student and overall character.


Additionally, all candidates’ names will be submitted to Administration for review. Major disciplinary infractions (those resulting in documented disciplinary action) as well as plagiarism, cheating, and academic dishonesty, are reason to be denied admission to National Honor Society, regardless of the school year in which they occurred.