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Spotlight on Scholarship

Recognizing Students for Academic Excellence since 1995 


  • The Spotlight on Scholarship is a year-round recognition program sponsored by the Minnesota State High School League and McDonald's.
  • Through this program the League annually provides certificates to students who participate in League-sponsored activities and have a “B” average or better.
  • In addition to honoring student activity participants, the Spotlight on Scholarship program provides banners to League member schools whose varsity fine arts and athletic teams collectively achieve a grade-point average of 3.0 or higher.


Program Criteria for Spotlight on Scholarship Certificates

Students involved in League-sponsored activity programs who have a 3.0 or higher grade-point average are eligible to receive Spotlight on Scholarship certificates.


  • Students must be a member of a varsity, junior varsity or “B” squad (sophomore) athletic or fine arts team.  Students in grades seven through nine who are on varsity, junior varsity, or “B” squad teams are eligible for this award program. Students involved in Robotics, Clay Target, Cheerleading, Dance Team and Visual Arts are eligible for Spotlight on Scholarship Certificates.
  • Students in adapted athletic programs are also eligible for this award.  School administrators must verify that students who participate in these programs are progressing in their individual program at the expected rate.
  • The grade-point average of each student must be computed from the grading period ending closest to the end of each activity season.
  • Each school must use its own system for computing the grades for each student
  • Program forms (one per school) must be submitted by the school principal or activity director at the end of each grading period and must include the principal’s or activity director’s signature.  Spotlight on Scholarship Order Form

Program Criteria for Spotlight on Scholarship Banners 

League member schools whose varsity fine arts and athletic teams collectively achieve a 3.0 grade-point average will receive a Spotlight on Scholarship banner from the League.  In each subsequent year when the school’s varsity teams achieve the required grade-point average, a year tag will be added to the banner.  Here are some guidelines to follow when completing the application for a Spotlight on Scholarship banner.

  • This is a varsity team award.  Junior varsity and “B” squad teams are not eligible.
  • The grade-point average for all varsity athletic and fine arts teams must be computed at the end of the school year and reported to the League.
  • Each school is required to use its own system for computing team grade-point averages.
  • The athletic team grade averages must include every member of the official varsity team.  If the varsity team includes students in grades seven through nine, their grades must be included in the team average.
  • The team grade-point averages for track and field, swimming and diving, synchronized swimming, and gymnastics must include members that enter the first level of state qualifying competition.
  • The grade-point averages of debate, one act play (cast & crew members) and speech teams must include every member of the team that enters the first level of the state qualifying competition.  Students involved in music (instrumental/vocal/individual/group) qualify by entry at the section/state level.
  • Schools that cooperatively sponsor an activity must include the grade-point averages of each participating school’s varsity team members. Spotlight on Scholarship Banner or Year Tag Order Form