Media Credentials

The NCHSAA Board of Directors passed a policy in the winter of 2022 requiring all media to have passed a background check in the past year to be approved for NCHSAA Media Credential Requests. Credential requests made after January 1, 2023, must include a background check before approval can be granted for any Year-Long Credentials. The NCHSAA will no longer issue event specific media credentials or passes. All members of the media planning to cover NCHSAA post-season events must secure a Year-Long Credential through Dragonfly. For Championship events, the NCHSAA will ask members of the media to RSVP, but a Year-Long Credential will still be required. 

All requests for credentials will be handled through DragonFly.  

Step 1: Joining the North Carolina Media Outlets in DragonFly

Go to and click Log In/Sign up. You can then click sign up for free to create your account. After a verification email is sent to you, you will be able to get started. From your “My Info” Page (accessible by clicking on your name), you will be able to click “Connect to School or Association”. 

  • Select “Other School Role” when you are asked which role best describes you. 
  • Find North Carolina and select that as your state.
  • Search for “North Carolina Media Outlets” when asked to search for your school or state organization. 
  • Select “North Carolina Media Outlets” and click join. [Note that you must be approved by NCHSAA staff in order to join the Media Outlets organization. Joining this organization and being approved DOES NOT grant you a year-long pass. However, you can still request Credentials/Cards before being accepted as a member to the group.]

Once you have requested to join North Carolina Media Outlets, circles will appear on your “My info” page. Selecting the circle for the 2023-24 school year will allow you to update your demographic information, consent to a background check and pay the $12 fee. Accounts are pulled for background checks Tuesdays and usually return by Fridays. Once the background check has returned clear, then the requests for Credentials will be addressed, so the entire process can take about a week.

Step 2: Requesting the Year-Long Credential:

  • Once logged in to Dragonfly, click on the home button or “Today” button. On the bottom of that page you can click the ‘Request a card’ icon in your Dragonfly profile and complete the necessary steps as prompted including uploading of your photo.
    • You may download the Dragonfly Coaches app to your mobile device – you will need to present a mobile device with the digital media credential to gain access to NCHSAA events – if approved. Credentials are DIGITAL. There will be no hard copy credentials mailed to you.
    • Once the background check has been completed, if approved, your status will be updated in DragonFly. If there are issues with the background check, you may be contacted by a member of the NCHSAA Staff for follow-up.
  • Please be sure to accurately complete all sections of the background check authorization form before submission. This includes a complete SSN, name, address, etc.

No New Year-Long Credential Requests will be approved without a fully completed and clean background check. An individual requesting credentials must have completed a background check approved by the NCHSAA within the last 365 days to receive credential approval. If media members have recently completed a background check through their current employer, a copy of that provided to the NCHSAA would fulfill the requirement, but a DragonFly account is still required to obtain the digital card. 

We understand that this is a new policy and please know that it is subject to change as we learn how best to implement this system. We thank you in advance for being flexible and helping us work to ensure the safety of all students in our programs.

Since the NCHSAA is no longer issuing single-event passes, members of the media are strongly encouraged to apply for their year-long credentials prior to the start of the school year. The year-long credential will grant access to ALL NCHSAA playoff events including championship events (with accompanying RSVP). Should members of the media request a year-long pass in the immediate run-up to a championship event, they are not guaranteed to be approved in time as the background checks will take about one week to process.

NCHSAA Championship Media Registration

Registration for media members planning to attend NCHSAA Championship events can be completed in the form below. This form will only be open for championships after the regional rounds have been completed. For basketball, the registration will open after the completion of the third round of competition.

Per the Media Policies and Procedures:

  1. The issuance of all media credentials to NCHSAA events is at the sole discretion of the NCHSAA staff. Submission of a Year-Long Credential (YLC card) request or Event Registration does not guarantee a representative a media credential. All requests will be reviewed and must be approved by the NCHSAA staff. The NCHSAA will notify any individual whose request has been denied.
  2. Subject to limitations of space of specific events, registrations may be limited and will be allocated to accredited media in accordance with the following general criteria.
    1. Media outlets who have followed the participating schools on a regular basis;
    2. The circulation/market size/market penetration of the media outlet in question;
    3. Previous coverage of NCHSAA events;
    4. The date of receipt of the media outlet’s request for credentials; and
    5. Media outlets that report original and unique content.
  3. In allocating space for accredited media organizations to NCHSAA events, priority will be given to:
    1. Media which is statewide in scope (wire services, regional television, etc.);
    2. Media which covers their hometown competing teams (daily newspapers, weekly newspapers, radio stations, television/cable stations, etc.);
    3. Media that covers the site of the host facility (daily newspapers, weekly newspapers, radio stations, television/cable stations, etc.); and
    4. All other media (internet sites, specialty publications).
  4. Only those representatives whose registrations are submitted by the advertised deadline AND have been issued a YLC will be approved. Late requests will not be guaranteed processing. Media representatives not approved for credentials in advance will not be issued credentials upon arrival at the site of the event. 
  5. Out-of-state media organizations must have a circulation area that includes the community of a participating school and must have covered that school throughout the regular season and state playoffs. All other out-of-state media organizations must explain the necessity for their coverage of the event.
  6. Media representatives who receive a YLC and register to an NCHSAA event must be on assignment for a specific media organization. Credential requests for freelance reporters, freelance photographers, correspondents, or stringers must be include outlet names that freelancers have or typically worked with.
  7. Unless otherwise approved by the NCHSAA, YLC Cards will not be issued to commercial photographers.
  8. Credentials or complimentary tickets for spouses, friends, etc. of news media representatives will not be provided. Individuals who attend an event with a credentialed news media representative will be required to purchase a ticket.
  9. YLCs to an NCHSAA event are issued for the sole purpose of identifying and providing complimentary admission and special access to representatives who have a legitimate working function in connection with the event. Unauthorized use, sale or other transfer of a credential will subject the bearer to ejection from the event, revocation of the credential and the indefinite denial of credentials to future events.
  10. YLCs, once issued, remain the property of the NCHSAA and are subject to revocation and confiscation at the discretion of the NCHSAA Commissioner and/or his/her designees. Grounds for revocation and confiscation of a credential include, but are not limited to, misuse, abuse and/or transfer of the credential to anyone other than to the person to who the credential is issued. Any media outlet whose representative has a credential revoked for any reason is subject to being denied credentials to future NCHSAA events.

Special Provisions for Independent Photographers in addition to the Dragonfly credentialling request process with background check: Independent Photographers seeking to gain credentials must have an administrator from no less than two NCHSAA member schools submit letters of recommendation on their behalf indicating the photographer and any additional staff employed by the company abide by NCHSAA and Local Rules and Regulations concerning media, consistently professionally conduct themselves and supply the school with the desired service. These letters must be submitted directly from the member school administrators to Brandon Moree, Director of Communications and Media Relations at, during the application process before outlet approval.