- 80.9% of Forsyth County’s 9th graders graduate from high school in four years. This is an improvement over last year's rate of 78.8%, but there is still work to be done.
- Forsyth ranks 3rd in graduation rates among the states five most populous counties, diminishing our economic competitiveness.1
- Dropouts earn 32% less than high school graduates. They are more likely to live below the poverty line, serve time in jail, live shorter lives, and receive government assistance.2
1North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.
2High School Dropouts: Individual Economic Cost and The Role of the GED as a Potential Factor, Magnus Lofstrom, University of Texas at Dallas, The Social Costs of Inadequate Education, Henry M. Levin, Columbia University.
United Way's Response
- Established improving the high school graduation rate as our top priority.
- Created a comprehensive pilot initiative in early 2008 to increase tutoring, family involvement, counseling, mentoring, graduation coaching for students at-risk of dropping out.
- Targeted the pilot program for Parkland Magnet High School (lowest graduation rate in system) and Philo Magnet Academy (Funded by Women's Leadership Council dollars), Parkland’s largest feeder school.
- Expanded limited tutoring in Spring 2010 to Mineral Springs Middle School and East Forsyth Middle School. (Funded by Women's Leadership Council dollars)
- Expanded targeted tutoring in Spring 2010 to Carver High School
- Intensive tutoring began at Atkins High School in Spring 2010
- A comphrehensive program at North Forsyth High School began in Summer 2011
|Key Outcomes||Baseline||Most recent||Percent Change|
|Parkland Magnet High School Graduation Rate||65.8%||74.3%||+12.96%|
|Parkland students passing End of Course tests||42.3%||70.7%||+67.1%|
|Atkins High School Graduation Rate||53.3%||96.9%*||+81.8%*|
|Atkins students passing End of Course tests||45.6%||48.0%||+5.3%|
|Carver High School Graduation Rate||66.1%||72.6%||+9.8%|
|Carver students passing End of Course tests||52.5%||58.1%||+10.6%|
|Philo Magnet Academy students testing on grade level in math||29.6%||70.1%||+136.8%|
|Philo Magnet Academy students testing on grade level in reading||18.3%||39.3%||+114.7%|
* Atkins became a full magnet school 2 years ago and therefore had a very different population of students in the school year that just ended (2012). This is the primary reason for the striking increase in the graduation rate there.
Over 27 percent of Forsyth County high school students fail to graduate in four years. This ranks third among North Carolina’s five largest metros.1
1 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
United Way's Goal
Increase the high school graduation rate by ensuring that 9th graders complete high school within four years. In doing so, we create better opportunities for success in life for our young people, and enhance the economic competitiveness of Forsyth County.
Ninety percent of approximately 1,000 parents receiving parent education services increased their confidence and skills in assisting in their child’s development.
Ninety-two percent or 72 of 76 rising kindergarteners were rated ready for school. Most were from economically and educationally challenged families.
More than 475 youth facing potential criminal prosecution for first-time offenses or truancy avoided court through the use of mediation and alternative court programs. Most of these youth demonstrated increased classroom involvement, attendance, and grade improvement following their participation in these court-alternative programs.
Of the more than 2,700 youth served in programs to enhance academic performance and improve attitudes towards school over 75% achieved an improvement in their grades and behavior.
United Way’s Partners
Big Brothers Big Sisters; Catholic Social Services; Crosby Scholars Community Partnership, Imprints for Families, Mediation Services; Old Hickory Council, Boy Scouts of America; The Salvation Army; Tarheel Triad Girl Scouts; YMCA of Northwest North Carolina; and YWCA of Greater Winston-Salem.