JCPS Dropout Numbers Decline

Fewer students dropped out of Johnston County Public Schools during the 2019-2020 school year compared to a year earlier. According to dropout data presented to the school board, 1.07 percent of students in grades 9-12 quit school last year, down from 1.82 percent during the 2018-2019 school term. It’s also the lowest number in the past five years. 

Last year’s statewide rate was 2.01 percent. 

Smithfield Selma High had the highest dropout rate at 1.9 percent followed by North Johnston High at 1.29%, South Johnston 1.22%, Clayton High 1.09% and Corinth Holders at 1.06%. Cleveland High reported a dropout rate of 0.95%, West Johnson 0.67% and Princeton High 0.51%. The Early College Academy had the lowest rate at 0.43%. 

In real numbers, 126 students quit school last year compared to 215 the year before. Sixty-eight percent were male and 29.4 percent were classified as Exceptional Children (EC). 36 percent were white, 34.9 percent Hispanic and 20.6 percent were African American.      

The top reasons cited by students who quit were lack of engagement, work/employment, unstable home, discipline and attendance issues, and childcare or pregnancy. 


  1. When attendance enforcement is lacking or non-existent, and thus instruction becomes under no compulsion from the school or parent(s), then why drop out if attending no longer has an ill consequences?

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