What is the Capstone Project?

The Capstone Project is a graduation requirement for North Branford High School and all high school students throughout the State of Connecticut. It is a personalized learning experience and an opportunity for students to incorporate and apply the skills they have learned throughout their education.

Students will begin by choosing a Capstone topic that interests them. It can be a personal interest, a career opportunity they want to explore, a problem they might like to solve, or an area they are interested in learning more about. Each student's experience will be individualized and unique to them and a new way for them to engage in their local community. Students will work under the guidance of their mentor to complete an independent performance project comprising of four phases.

4 Phases of the Capstone Project

PHASE 1 – Planning and Preparation

Students will document the planning and preparation of their Capstone Project by completing a Letter of Intent that explains how the requirements of the project will be met. In their letter, students are required to adhere to specific formatting and respond to clearly defined questions and prompts. During this phase, students will find a mentor who will act as a guide and resource of knowledge, providing support throughout their Capstone journey. Students will then set up a schedule, create goals, and a plan to achieve those goals. Students will also complete a Mentor Information Sheet and Journal #1.

PHASE 2 – Field Work

Students are required to complete a minimum of 25 documented hours of volunteer service in their designated field under the guidance of their mentor. During this phase, students must complete Journal #2 and Journal #3. Each journal entry serves as a platform for students to describe their fieldwork progress, reflect on their new learning, and delineate future goals.

PHASE 3 – Reflective Narrative and Final Product

Students must complete a formal and carefully crafted Reflective Narrative that summarizes the Capstone experience, evaluates the effectiveness of their progress, reflects on NBHS’ SOAR Expectations, and applies new learning to future endeavors. Additionally, students will create a Final Product that will be presented at the final presentation, that best highlights the Capstone experience and showcases new learning.

PHASE 4 – Final Presentation

Each student is required to conduct a formal Final Presentation before a panel of teachers. While specific criteria will drive the presentations, students will have the opportunity to choose an effective method to present their capstone. Many options in content, style, and format are available to students.


The Vision of the Graduate

North Branford High School Graduates are socially responsible, engaged citizens, committed to academic mastery, and personal growth.

SOAR Expectations

North Branford High School students will effectively:

● Demonstrate SOAR Expectations and be:

  • Socially Responsible Contributors,
  • Open-Minded Engaged Citizens,
  • Achievement Focused Students, and
  • Resilient Lifelong Learners within the school and community

Capstone Expectations

While the element of choice and broad scope of this project differentiates it from others, students are required to demonstrate their mastery of North Branford High School’s SOAR Expectations.

This includes, but is not limited to honesty, collaboration, empathy, engagement, communication, critical thinking, initiative, and accountability.

Mission Statement

Mission Statement

The Capstone Project is an opportunity for students to synthesize and apply the skills acquired throughout their education and engage in personalized learning in a specialized area of interest. The phases of the Capstone Project will challenge students in the areas of effective communication, independent inquiry, and authentic learning in real-world situations. Successful completion of the project fosters productive citizenship and active learning, better preparing students to meet the challenges of their post-secondary experiences.

Graduating with Distinction

Qualifications for Graduating with Distinction

Students are eligible for Graduating with Distinction if they have a total grade average of an 87 or above after 15 complete marking periods (calculated following the third marking period of the senior year). Any student who receives an F as a final grade (Year End Grade) will not be eligible.

In addition, seniors must complete 40 volunteer fieldwork hours during their Capstone Project (15 more than required for Capstone) to be considered for the status of Graduating with Distinction.

Igniting Talent


IgnitingTalent is a career-readiness program for Juniors and Seniors uncertain of their post high school future.

Created in partnership with School Counselors and the business community to provide students with hands-on internships and real-life experience in the field of their interest.