What is CCCA?

The Need

Public education in North Carolina continues to make remarkable strides. However, we still have a long way to go. Our children are not completing high school in four years and for too many, not at all. Out of those who gain their diploma, few finish college.

Columbus County Schools, in conjunction with Southeastern Community College, Robeson Community College, Cape Fear Community College, NC New Schools Project, and The Golden Leaf Foundation, seeks innovative and engaging solutions to this problem.

At the SCC campus of CCCA, students may complete an A.A. or other college transfer program leading to a university Bachelor’s Degree.  At the Fair Bluff campus, students will have access to clusters of courses in Broadcasting & Communications, Culinary Arts, Metals Machining, and Masonry.  They will also take many college classes leading to a college certificate or diploma.

All freshmen will be located on the Fair Bluff campus and may designate at the end of the ninth grade which path they choose to pursue.  Students who decide to study for the college pathway will move to the SCC campus during their 10th grade year.

A Different Kind of School

The new 3 R’s of education are Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships, and CCCA is majoring in all three! Our students are involved in service learning, field trips, project-based learning, and job shadowing co-ops. Each student is assigned to an advisory to guide them through this important transition. Parents are Partners at CCCA, serving as volunteers and helping to make decisions regarding their child’s future.  In addition, each year we take our students to visit universities around NC so they can become familiar with transfer options.  As of 2010, 100% of our graduates have gone on to four year universities and our average SAT score is 1661, almost 200 points higher than the state average.  Also, as a group, our students score as well or better than the traditional community college students in their college classes.


Extracurricular Activities

Although the Early College does not have an athletic program or JROTC, students do take a variety of college P.E. courses such as lifetime sports, weight training, yoga, softball, and even golf, archery, bowling, or Tae Kwon Doe.

In addition, we have many clubs and school activities such as dances and overnight field trips. Finally, our students can study music (voice piano, guitar, woodwinds, strings, community band, and choir) with college professors and all at no cost!.

At CCCA We Believe:


  • All of our students must be college and career-ready critical thinkers to compete in a global economy.
  • All of our curriculum and instruction must be purposeful, researched based, and of the highest quality.
  • Each student has individual needs and can make unique contributions.
  • High expectations of respect, honesty, and responsibility promote student achievement.
  • A safe, supportive, and orderly school environment supports learning.
  • Character education is paramount to student development.
  • Diversity is recognized and respected.
  • Well-rounded students participate in academic and extracurricular activities.
  • Schools are interdependent with parents and the community.
  • Educators are valued professionals.

How do I Enroll?

CCCA is a joint venture of Columbus County Schools and Southeastern Community College. Applications for admission are available at all local public middle schools, the CCCA campus in Fair Bluff, and the CCCA office on the second floor of Nesmith on the SCC campus.

Any student who will be in the ninth grade in the fall of 2013 may apply. The student body will be representative of the diversity of Columbus County, but special attention is paid to recruiting first generation college students.

Applications must be completed and returned along with references by  April 27, 2013. Then each potential candidate will be expected to visit the SCC campus along with his or her parents in order to determine if CCCA would be the best educational environment to reach his goals. Students can expect to receive notification of their acceptance by the middle of May and will then need to be prepared to attend freshman “boot camp” at the end of July.

Frequently Asked Questions


1. Is busing provided for CCCA students?  Free transportation is available as long as enrolled.

2. Is school lunch provided? School lunch is provided for students at CCCA and is representative of the lunch provided in other high schools.

3. Do students who attend CCCA wear uniforms?  CCCA is a school within the Columbus County Schools system and, therefore, follows the same dress requirements as other Columbus County High Schools. Students are required to wear student ID’s at all times and also a polo shirt identifying them as part of our school as well as khaki, black, or navy bottoms.

4. Is the calendar and daily schedule the same as the other high schools in the county?  No, CCCA runs on a different calendar and schedule than the other public schools in order to allow students to take college courses. We begin the first week in August and end the middle of May. Our days typically run from approximately 9:00am until 4:00pm.

5.  Can I still do sports, JROTC or band at the “big high school?”  When a student comes to CCCA, he or she is no longer a student at the other high school and cannot participate in their extracurricular activities. Of course, you can still go to their games and public events.

6.  Is it challenging?  Yes, it is challenging! Students report that it takes a lot of organization and dedication to do well at CCCA, however, you do not have to be super smart. Our school is great at reaching students at their current level and helping them move forward, but they have to want it!

7. How do I enroll to become a student at CCCA?  Eighth grade students will visit each campus of CCCA in Columbus County in February and talk to current CCCA students. During this time, they can ask questions and learn more about what it is like to be a student at CCCA. Students that are interested in becoming a CCCA student will receive applications during this time or they can download an application from our website here.

8. Can someone who is already in high school transfer to CCCA?  No. We are sorry, but the only time to enroll is prior to the 9th grade.

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