Polk County Early College is located in Columbus, North Carolina in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. 

The Early College began in the fall of 2007 and was a project of North Carolina Governor, Mike Easley. The college was the first virtual early college in the state, and it is partially funded by the Bill and MeLinda Gates Foundation. 

The Polk County Early College is a Learn and Earn School in which students earn college credits while in high school. The Early College is a partner with Isothermal Community College and with the North Carolina Virtual Public School.



√ Do you like to complete your assignments on the computer?

√ Are you self-motivated?

√ Are you an independent learner who likes to learn at your own pace?

√ Do you like to have flexibility in your use of time?

√ If there were no bells to begin and end class, would you be committed to learning online?

√ Do you have good communication and reading skills?

√ Do you want to take Latin, French, German, or Chinese?

√ Do you have a strong personal commitment to learning?

√ Do you want to accelerate your learning?

√ Do you want to earn college credits while you are in high school?




If you answered “yes” to the questions above then you are a good candidate for  

Polk County Early College  


Please contact Mary Greene for an application at 

828-894-2698 or email mgreene@polkschools.org

Student Response

"I like the early college because for the most part I can work at my own pace."  ~ Daniel

"I like the early college because everybody gets along and we are like one big happy family!" ~ Portia

"The early college challenges me to do my best and succeed." ~ Emily

"I like the Early College because it isn't like a regular school. We are like a family." ~ Anna

"I can get high school and college credits. Also because you do your work at your own pace." ~ Kasey

"I like Polk County Early College simply because it challenges me to do my very best academic wise." ~ Samantha









Online Learning


Are you:

    + Independent
    + Self Motivated
    + Strong Reader
    + Desire to Learn
Online Learning at the Early College may be of interest to you.

Contact us to learn about the opportunities available at the Polk County Early College.