Welcome to Advanced Academic & Specialty Programs

Prince William County Public Schools believes all students deserve the opportunity to perform to their greatest potential. It is the goal of the Advanced Academics and Specialty Programs to provide all students with a learning environment that is challenging, engaging, and meets their individual academic needs.

Advanced Academics in PWCS consists of includes courses, programs, assessments and services that provide opportunities for students to demonstrate college and career readiness and earn post-secondary credit. Specialty Programs allow for career exploration, subject area concentration, and college/university preparation.

All schools in Prince William County offer a comprehensive educational program designed to meet the needs of all students. Equitable and inclusive access to our programs is essential for all students and supports the PWCS Strategic Plan.


Advanced Academics        Specialty Programs

Advanced Academics and Specialty Programs logo

Applications and Admission

Specialty/CTE applications will re-open in the fall of 2022. 

Governor's School Application will re-open in the fall of 2022. Governor's School Print Application (PDF) 

*For reference only

Specialty Programs are available by application to students. Students may apply to:

  • Attend a program at their base school
  • Transfer to a program at another school
  • Attend a CTE transport program for part of the day and attend all other classes and activities at their base school

Transfer Program Applications

All students must apply for admission through the PWCS Specialty Program application beginning November 1. All applications are due on February 1.

*Applications to The Center for Fine and Performing Arts at Colgan High School are due on Monday, December 7, 2020.

*Students applying to the Pre-Governor's School Program at Osbourn Park must complete an additional application. Please visit the Pre-Governor's School Webpage for additional details

Transport Program Applications

CTE Transport program applications are accessed and processed by the site school. Applications are due on March 15, 2021. Please see each program for specific information.


Transfer Programs

Students living within the boundaries of the specialty program school may ride their regular bus to school. Students who reside outside the program school boundaries may utilize the network of express bus stops. Transportation requests must be returned to the school with the specialty program application and again for every year the student is enrolled in the program. Parents have the responsibility to provide transportation to and from express bus stops.

Transport Programs

Students attend all core and non-program classes and activities at their base school. A PWCS bus transports students between their base school and their program school for all CTE program classes daily, returning in time to ride their regular bus home.

High School Programs

High School Information Night Video

Advanced Academic and Specialty Programs

Advanced Placement Scholars (AP), Biotechnology, Cambridge Programme, Center for Applied Sciences, Interactive and Information Technology (CASIIT), Center for Environmental Sciences (CENS), Center for Fine and Performing Arts (CFPA), Center for International Studies and Language (CISL), Environmental Engineering, Fine and Performing Arts, Governor’s School @ Innovation Park, International Baccalaureate (IB), Information Technology (IT),  Law and Public Safety, Pathways to Global Citizenship, and Pre-Governor's School.

CTE Transfer Programs

Agriculture, Automotive Technology, Aviation Maintenance, Biomedical Science, Building Trades, Cabinetmaking, Cybersecurity, Electricity, Medical Coding and Billing, Pharmacy Technician, Plumbing, Television Production, and Welding.

CTE Transport Programs

Cosmetology, Culinary Arts, Firefighting, and Practical Nursing. 

Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC)

If your school does not offer Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (JROTC), you may apply for a school-based transfer through the JROTC webpage.

Middle School Programs

Middle School Information Night Video

PWCS offers Specialty Programs at nine middle schools. These programs are available by application. Please see the Middle School Programs Website for more information.

Programs Offered:

  • International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme
  • Mathematics and Science
  • Same Gender Program
  • Traditional School
  • World Languages

Elementary School Programs

PWCS offers a variety of Specialty Programs at the elementary level. These programs are available by application. Please see the Elementary School Programs Website for more information.

Programs Offered:

  • International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme
  • Mathematics and Science
  • Traditional School
  • World Languages

High School Course Catalog

Detailed information on graduation requirements and all high school programs and courses is available in the PWCS High School Course Catalog.

Frequently Asked Questions

Admissions Lottery

All programs accept students in good standing based on student interest apart from the Center for Fine and Performing Arts. A lottery is conducted when student application requests exceed the space available in the program.

School Information Nights

Detailed program information and dates for school-based information nights are posted on each program website. Follow the More Information link within each program tab. 

Transfer Eligibility for Virginia High School League Activities (VHSL)

Students who are granted approval to transfer to a school outside their established attendance area shall be eligible to participate in Virginia High School League activities when entering the school as a first time ninth grader, or as a 10th grade student entering a specialty program for the first time. Any further transferring without a corresponding address will result in a 365-day period of ineligibility.

If a student is dismissed by the program director from the designated site program for not meeting the program requirements, the student shall return to his or her base school the following school year.

If a student chooses to withdraw from a designated site program, the student shall return to his or her base school the following school year. The student will be ineligible for 365 calendar days in accordance of Virginia High School League Transfer Rule 28A-7-1.

Students participating in Transport programs shall attend all non-program courses and activities at their base school.

Please see PWCS Regulation 640-2 for more information.