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Union County NC Schools--Ten Questions Answered

What do I need to know about the Union County NC schools?  This may be one of the first questions you ask if you are a newcomer to the area or a parent hoping to move to a community with great schools.  Here are answers to ten questions to help you understand the Union County schools.

  1. How many school districts serve Union County residents?  The public schools in Union County are served by one district:  Union County Public Schools (UCPS).  The district covers the entire county.   UCPS is the 6th largest school system in the state.
  2. If the public schools are served by a countywide district, how do I know which schools my child will attend?  The district is divided into assignment zones called clusters. Each cluster includes several elementary schools that feed into a middle school and a high school.  Clusters with newer school buildings tend to have the middle and high schools on the same campus.  Sometimes, an elementary school is also located nearby. 
  3. If I move into a neighborhood assigned to a specific school, will I be assured that my child will always be able to attend that school?  The school assignment zones are not static geographic areas and can change as new schools are built.  Union County was the fastest growing county in North Carolina in the 2000s.  Many new schools were built to accommodate that growth.  As new schools were built, assignment areas had to change to populate the new schools.  Assignment areas in Union County tend to be stable unless schools become overcrowded and new schools are needed.
  4. If I live in one of Union County’s small towns, do the assignment zones correspond to town boundaries?  Assignment areas in Union County have nothing to do with municipal boundaries.
  5. Does Union County have year-round schools?  Most county schools operate on a traditional calendar with several months off in the summer. There are six year-round schools in the district.  The year-round schools started the 2013-2014 school year on July 22, 2013.  These schools have three two-week breaks called Intersessions throughout the school year.
  6. Why do students on the traditional calendar start before Labor Day?  August 26 is the first day of school in the 2013-2014 school year.  The last day of school is June 11, 2014.  Historically, schools in North Carolina started in early to mid-August every year.  Several years ago, the state legislature passed a law requiring state districts to start school no earlier that August 26 because of complaints from businesses catering to tourism in the mountains and at the coast.  Districts across the state continue to begin school in August.
  7. What is the typical size of individual schools?  Elementary schools serve 500 to 900 students.  Middle and high schools typically have 1100 to 1400 students.
  8. How do test scores at UCPS compare with other districts?  2012 SAT scores exceeded state and national averages.  (UCPS 1529, State 1469, Nation 1498) Union County also ranked #2 among North Carolina’s largest school districts in the percentage of schools that met the federal No Child Left Behind goals.
  9. What are graduation rates in the Union County schools? In 2011-2012,Union County’s graduation rate 89.5% ranked first among the 34 largest districts in the state. The graduation rate in 2012-2013 improved to 90.8%.  Five of the county’s high schools had a 97% or higher graduation rate.
  10. Where can I find more information about individual schools?  Click here for more information about Union County NC schools.

Want to know more about real estate and living in Union County NC?  Request a free Union County NC relocation package.

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Copyright 2013.  Carol Fox.  Allen Tate Realtors.  *Union County NC Schools—Ten Questions Answered*

Posted: Saturday, August 17, 2013 10:40 AM by Carol Fox

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