GCS Records Lowest Dropout Rate of Largest Districts

Guilford County Schools (GCS) once again lowered the dropout rate during the 2010-11 school year and maintained the lowest dropout rate among North Carolina's largest school districts. Data released today by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction shows last year's GCS dropout rate as 2.71 percent, down a tenth of a point from the 2009-10 dropout rate of 2.81 percent.

Dropout Rates of North Carolina's Largest School Districts

Guilford County Schools

2.71 percent

Cumberland County Schools

3.12 percent

Wake County Schools

3.25 percent

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

3.52 percent

Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools

3.81 percent

The district also continued to keep its dropout rate below the state average of 3.43 percent for the 2010-11 school year. GCS has reduced its dropout rate each year since Superintendent Maurice "Mo" Green came to the district. Data reflects that 135 fewer students dropped out of high school in 2010-11 than in the 2007-08 school year.

Dropout Rates - GCS vs. State

School Year

GCS Dropout Rate

N.C. Dropout Rate

GCS Dropout Count

N.C. Dropout Count


2.71 percent

3.43 percent




2.81 percent

3.75 percent




3.13 percent

4.27 percent




3.31 percent

4.97 percent



The state also released data today on reportable offenses, short-term suspensions and long-term suspensions. GCS saw a rise in the number of offenses reported under state law. In 2010-11, GCS reported 700 offenses, or 9.828 acts per 1,000 students. This number is up from 608 offenses in 2009-10. It is required that schools report these types of serious crime or violence to law enforcement immediately under North Carolina General Statute 115C-288(g).

The number of short-term suspensions assigned to GCS students was down from 10,881 in 2009-10 to 10,781 in 2010-11. Long-term suspensions were up from 88 in 2009-10 to 115 in 2010-11.

The district addresses school safety in Area V - Safe Schools and Character Development of the strategic plan. The 2010-11 data indicates GCS exceeded expectations for the goal of decreasing the number of overall out-of-school suspensions related to non-compliance and discourteous acts by 15 percent. GCS data shows there were 5,281 out-of-school suspensions for Rule 6 and Rule 8 violations in 2010-11. However, the district has not made adequate progress toward the goal of decreasing the number of state reportable incidents per 1,000 students by 10 percent.

The state releases a consolidated report including data on dropouts, school crime and suspensions annually. The full report and additional data tables are available on the Department of Public Instruction website at http://dpi.state.nc.us/research/discipline/reports/ and http://dpi.state.nc.us/research/dropout/reports/ .