The initial thrust to establish a national consortium came from four schools: North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics; Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology; Louisiana School for Mathematics, Science, and the Arts; and the Illinois Mathematics Science Academy. These schools hosted an organizational meeting in the spring of 1988 at Thomas Jefferson High in Alexandria, Va., and 11 additional schools responded to their invitation to join the efforts. These 15 founding member institutions established the National Consortium for Specialized Secondary Schools of Mathematics, Science, and Technology, as a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.

In 1988 STEM was not a well-known term. Since then, education in the disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and math – STEM – has become a widely recognized and understood term. In early 2014, to continue to move forward as the leader in STEM at the secondary level, the Consortium board of directors voted to shorten the name to better identify the membership and constituency of the Consortium. The new name, the National Consortium of Secondary STEM Schools (NCSSS) reflects the core membership, while preserving the rich heritage and history of the Consortium.

Founding Member Schools of NCSSS

Recognizing our founding institutional members:

“Prior to 1988, communication among the many specialized schools was mostly informal. Four such schools- The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, Thomas Jefferson High school for Science and Technology, Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts, and the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy – sought to create a formal alliance among these schools. They planned an organizational meeting from the spring of 1988 to be held at Thomas Jefferson High School in Fairfax County, VA. The directors of the schools contacted all of known similar programs and invited them to send representatives.”

— quote from “Shaping Leadership for the 21st Century” (1991), edited by Michael Haney, PhD. former president of NCSSSMST.


Illinois Mathematics & Science Academy


Louisiana School for Math, Science & the Arts


Blair Science, Mathematics, Computer Science Magnet Program
Eleanor Roosevelt Science and Technology Center


Kalamazoo Area Mathematics & Science Center


Mississippi School for Mathematics & Science


North Carolina School of Science & Mathematics


Brooklyn Technical High School
Stuyvesant High School
The Bronx High School of Science


Liberal Arts and Science Academy of Austin at LBJ HS


Central Virginia Governor’s School for Science and Technology
New Horizons Governor’s School for Science and Technology
Roanoke Valley Governor’s School for Science & Technology
Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology