Two North Carolina School Systems Raising Dropout Age To 18

Two Catawba County school districts are raising the mandatory attendance age from 16 to 18.

The Charlotte Observer reported the school districts in Hickory and Newton-Conover will be the first in North Carolina to use a new law approved last summer. The new rules will take effect for the 2014-15 school year.

State Superintendent of Public Schools June Atkinson says she hopes the effort will spread across the state. Atkinson says it is unacceptable to have people leave high school without a degree.

A number of states have been raising school attendance requirements to try to keep their students competitive for high-tech manufacturers.

The dropout age for the rest of North Carolina is 16.

A judge would decide any penalty for violators.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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