Honor Society Formal Complaint Procedures


May 2022 Update: As the academic year draws to a close, please note that some complaints filed at this time will be reviewed over the summer and addressed with school personnel at the start of next academic year. To facilitate the review of the complaint, please be sure to provide all required documentation. 

The national office of NHS, NJHS and NEHS has established the following procedures for submitting complaints regarding the policies and procedures of our affiliated chapters. The complaint process seeks to ensure that all chapters are operating in compliance with established Honor Society policies identified in the NHS, NJHS and NEHS Constitutions and Handbooks. 

This complaint form is not to be used to appeal the membership decisions of local chapters. Please contact your school district's central office or school hierarchy if you wish to elevate your appeal beyond the school principal. Review and follow these instructions to facilitate the fastest resolution of your complaint:
1. Review the NHS ConstitutionNJHS Constitution or NEHS Constitution and list of policy violations below to identify any possible violations of Honor Society policy. 

2. Address all alleged policy violations with the chapter adviser, school principal and school district superintendent (or princpal's superior in a private school) in writing. Confirm below that these individuals have been given an opportunity to respond to these concerns and correct any possible violations of Honor Society policy prior to filing the complaint.

3. The national office cannot hear appeals or render decisions for selection or dismissal. Complaints must identify at least one violation of Honor Society policy as the basis of the complaint, and include evidence of the violation(s). 
4. Complaints identifying a chapter’s noncompliance with Honor Societies are thoroughly investigated, and the national office will identify corrective actions required to bring the chapter into compliance. The complaint must cite specific instances of a chapter’s violation of Honor Society policies. 

5. *If available, include copies of chapter bylaws, dismissal, selection procedures or other policy documents provided by the school. Bylaws are often provided to Honor Society members by the chapter adviser or school principal. The school is not required to provide them to nonmembers, but they should verify the existence of bylaws.

* Chapters are required to publish a description of their selection procedures in a school publication and provide a written description of their dismissal procedures upon request. If these documents do not exist or the chapter is unwilling or unable to provide them, please note that in your timeline below.
6. Include only information that is relevant to the issue(s) identified in the complaint. Do not embellish or otherwise misrepresent actions of the chapter (adviser, faculty council, and/or principal). Avoid including any unfounded allegations or rumors in your correspondence. This includes rumors or hearsay about other students/members and their membership status.

7. Do not include academic records (i.e., report cards or transcripts), medical records, recommendations, legal documents, or other privileged information. All complaints and attachments become the property of NASSP (parent organization of NHS, NJHS, and NEHS) and will not be returned.

8. After submitting your complaint to the national office, provide a copy of the complaint to the adviser and principal.
9. Enter your name, active email address and initials where required. Anonymous complaints are not reviewed. All communication is sent via email. 

Unless otherwise indicated (i.e. noted above in red), complaints are reviewed within 20 business days of receipt. **This is a review period, not a resolution period.**

Next steps: If violations of Honor Society policy are identified, the school will be contacted following the review, and an outline for corrective action will be provided to the school. The national office will work to bring the chapter into compliance with national policies. Updates regarding your complaint will be sent via email from policy@nhs.us. The national office cannot guarantee a resolution timeframe or outcome regarding the individual selection or membership status of a student as a result of the complaint investigation, but we do work to correct all violations and bring chapters into compliance.
Schools that fail to or refuse to comply with these corrective actions can have their Honor Society charter revoked.  Revocation is a last resort. The goal of the complaint process is to bring errant chapters into compliance so that they may continue to recognize students who meet the requirements for membership.

Updates regarding a student's individual membership status will be provided by the school, not the national office. Following the corrective action required by the national office, the school should provide this information to parents and students. 

School Information

*indicates required field
Chapter Type *

Contact Information

Nature of Complaint (only check items relevant to this complaint. Attach verification below.)

Violations of Selection Policies
General Chapter Management Policy Violations
Violations of Discipline and Dismissal Policies

Supporting Documentation

Attach a timeline summarizing efforts to address the policy violation(s) identified above. Include any other relevant materials to assist in the investigation of this complaint, including written correspondence with the adviser and principal about the policy violations selected above.

To expedite the complaint review, only include attachments that are relevant to the complaint. 

Other relevant documents may include:

  • Chapter bylaws.
  • Chapter's published selection procedure description. 
  • Letters from the school regarding warning, dismissal, or nonselection.
  • Forms or other relevant documents provided by the school that verify the policy violations. 


If you are submitting this complaint on behalf of a named student, a release is required by the student's parent/legal guardian for complaints regarding a student's nonselection or dismissal from NHS, NJHS or NEHS.