Wilkes County is located in the Northwest Foothills of North Carolina and our emphasis on education is demonstrated in our public school system. Our public school system is comprised of four high schools, one Career Education Magnet High School, four middle schools, and thirteen elementary schools. Our children are being educated with our commitment to high educational settings in our modern and well-equipped schools. In a rapidly changing world, Wilkes County Schools is committed to serving the needs of its students to prepare them for a global life. In addition to public school, Wilkes County has several private schools.  

An increased focus on higher education is seen in the development of the Advanced Materials Cluster, Lowe’s Hall-Technology, Business and Industry Training & Development through the Small Business Center and Customized Occupational Training at Wilkes Community College (WCC). WCC is a public, two-year community college serving Wilkes, Ashe, and Alleghany counties with the primary mission of providing education, training, and retraining for the workforce that includes basic skills education, occupational, technical, and pre-baccalaureate programs. WCC also offers a variety of services, cultural activities, and recreational opportunities that improve quality of life for local residents. The North Carolina State Board of Community Colleges has continuously recognized WCC as a “Superior Institution,” by it meeting or exceeding the Board’s established performance measures.

Education Attainment

Subject Both
Male Female Population 18 - 24 Years
Population 18 to 24 years 193 118 75  Chart2-Education-Pop-18-24
< High School Graduate 11.9 12.7 10.8
High School Graduate
(includes equivalency)
21.2 13.6 33.3
Some College or
Associate's Degree
58.0 64.4 48.0
Bachelor's Degree or
8.8 9.3 8.0
Population 25 Years & > 2,468 1,098 1,370 Population 25 Years & > 
< 9th grade 10.7 8.9 12.2   
Chart-Education-Pop-over 25 years
9th to 12th grade
(no diploma)
213.5 9.8 16.4
High School graduate
(includes equivalency)
20.7 20.2 21.0
Some college, no degree 20.6 17.4 23.1
Associate's degree 11.9 14.2 10.0
Bachelor's degree 14.2 18.1 11.0
Graduate or professional
8.5 11.3 6.3
Source:  US Census Bureau / American FactFinder


Wilkes County Schools

Appalachian State University

Wilkes Community College

Industrial & Workforce Development