About Us

About Northwood High School

  • Northwood High School, home of the Chargers, is located on Hwy 15-501 just north of Pittsboro, North Carolina. Our school colors are green and gold and we are home to approximately 750 students in grades 9 through 12. Our faculty includes 55 Certified Teachers, 2 Counselors, 1 Librarian, a full-time Technology Technician Team, and 4 Administrators. We are approximately 15 to 20 minutes south of the Chapel Hill/Durham area and less than an hour from Raleigh.

    Chatham County is one of the fastest-growing “bedroom communities” for these shopping and educational centers. In addition, Chatham County is experiencing large amounts of growth, primarily in the Northwood attendance zone. In short, we can offer you small-town values and caring mixed with a short ride to the “big cities” and all they have to offer.

    Northwood High School opened for students in 1970 as part of a system consolidation effort. At present, there are three traditional high schools in Chatham County with Northwood being the largest and considered by many to be the flagship school. We are a 2A high school. Over the last 7 years, we have supported a 1 to 1 computer initiative (laptops for all students and staff), a school-wide wireless network, the establishment of Professional Learning Communities, and an ever-improving academic/instructional focus that keeps us technologically relevant as we meet the needs of our increasingly diverse student population.

    Academics and Activities

    Our school offers a wide range of academic, co-curricular, and extra-curricular activities for our students. Challenging core/elective classes in English, Math, Social Studies, and Science offer many Honors and AP opportunities. AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) helps many of our students reach for higher learning opportunities in their college plans. Elective classes include Band, Chorus, Drama, Dance, and Visual Arts venues along with Foreign Language and many online classes. CTE opportunities include Agriculture, Carpentry, Family and Consumer Sciences, Business, Marketing, and Parenting/Child Development. Clubs and organizations include National Honor Society, Career and Technical Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Student Council, Creative Writing, FFA, FCCLA, FBLA, DECA, Skills USA, HOSA, The STANCE Step Team, Dance Team, Brain Game Team, and Visual Arts/Dance/Thespian. Our in-house student-cheering group “The Northwood Nuthouse” rivals some of the local college/university groups. To say we have much to offer to all students is truly an understatement.

    Our SAT, EOC, AP, and ABC Composite scores indicate that consistently strong academic improvement is underway and our students are routinely selected for Governor’s School and innumerable other scholarship offerings. Northwood students average 100 points above the national average, continuing the streak of having the highest SAT score in Chatham County and scoring above both the state and national averages.  Our North Carolina Teacher Working Conditions Survey data is among the best in CCS and indicates a high level of teacher satisfaction with Northwood High School.


    Arts and Athletics

    Northwood High School is well known for an award-winning Arts Education Program featuring opportunities in Drama, Visual Arts, Vocal/Instrumental Music, and notably, our Modern Dance Program. Started in 1972, our dance program was the first of its type in North Carolina Public Schools, has two full-time teachers, and boasts full enrollments each year. Northwood Arts Education truly ROCKS! Our Athletic Program is unquestionably the CCS leader in almost every sport we play and a perennial state playoffs powerhouse. Our highly successful athletic program includes award-winning Football, Cheerleading, Volleyball, Tennis, Wrestling, Soccer, Basketball, Baseball, Softball, Cross Country, Golf, Track and Field, and most recently Lacrosse. We strive to develop student-athletes who graduate and go on to the next level both athletically and academically.


    During the last 15 years, Northwood has dominated the CCS Teacher of the Year selection process, and in one of those years had a NC Regional Teacher of the Year. We have five National Board Certified teachers and approx. 40% have advanced degrees and teacher retention is regularly above the state average.

    US News and World Report’s “America’s Best High Schools” - 2016

    Washington Post’s “America’s Best High Schools that Challenge Their Student to Excellence” – 2015, 2016

    ABC composite score at 88.94% (the highest in Chatham County Schools).

    Piedmont Triad Educational Consortium: Signature School of the Piedmont Triad, 2011

    North Carolina School of Distinction Status: 2010, 2011

    Newsweek Magazine’s “Top American High Schools” - 2009, 2010