COVINGTON -- The Newton County School System reported last week that nearly 3,000 students withdrew from its schools last school year, including nearly 300 dropouts.
At the request of school board Chairman Eddie Johnson, NCSS officials presented a withdrawal reason report for the previous school year to the board, showing that 2,912 students were withdrawn for various reasons from the system's 23 facilities. The numbers include 293 students considered as dropouts.
The report showed that 1,317 elementary students were withdrawn from the 13 NCSS elementary schools, and 56 of those were considered dropouts. From the five middle schools, 624 students were withdrawn, and 26 were considered dropouts. The three high schools reported that 875 students were withdrawn, and 190 were consider dropouts.
Additionally, 36 students withdrew from the Newton County Theme School at Ficquett, but none were dropouts, and 60 students were withdrawn from Challenge Charter Academy, and 21 of them were considered dropouts.
Students are considered withdrawn for court or legal purposes; death; if they attend home study; if they transferred out of country, to a private school, to another public school system in Georgia, to another school in the system or out of state; if they advance to another school in NCSS; if they transfer to a state school, private school or public school under Senate Bill 10; as part of school choice transfers; if they are transferred under the Department of Juvenile Justice; and if they are not subject to compulsory school attendance, among other reasons, according to the chart.
Students may be considered dropouts due to being expelled or incarcerated, failing school, joining the military, being removed for lack of attendance, having a serious illness or for reasons unknown, among others.
When a parent or guardian does not withdraw a student from a current school, a local education agency shall withdraw the student, according to the Georgia Department of Education.
School officials said they make every effort to locate students once they leave NCSS.
Alcovy High School totals the highest number of withdrawn students with 370; they also hold the highest total of dropouts with 92. Newton High School had 328 students withdrawn, including 72 dropouts, and Eastside High had 177 students withdrawn, including 26 dropouts.
Across Newton County, 980 students were transferred to another public school system in Georgia, 767 were transferred to another school in the system, 411 transferred out of state, 258 transferred to private school, 149 attend home study and 116 were withdrawn for reasons unknown.
Not included in the withdrawal figures, the total number of graduates from NCSS last school year totaled 958 students, including 310 from Alcovy High School, 272 from Eastside High and 366 from Newton High.
NCSS reports all withdrawal and dropout information to the state Department of Education each year.
In April, the Georgia Department of Education announced that the graduation rate for NCSS was 64.14 percent for the 2010-11 school year under the new cohort calculation. The state has yet to release graduation rates or dropout rates for last school year.