Table Rock Middle School

Economy in Burke County

Over half of the jobs in the Burke County are manufacturing jobs. The student survey show that nearly a 3rd of the jobs are manufacturing jobs. Many manufacturing jobs are disappearing due to the recession in the past few years and industry leaving the county.Because of this, Burke County unemployment had been rising until the 2nd quarter of 2010 when the unemployment rate dropped over 2%. Nonetheless, Burke County has lost around 33% of its total jobs in the past 4 years. The other major employment opportunities in Burke County are health care and social assistance, retail trade, and accommodation and food services. Burke County's population continues to rise even though Burke is losing jobs. The poverty rate is slightly higher than the unemployment rate. Even the highest paying jobs remain in the $30,000-$40,000 range, with only 1.3% of jobs falling into that category. There are very few jobs that offer a wage above $40,000 dollars while the North Carolina average is around $46,500. Many jobs are on pay scales lower than the state and national averages.  This fact does play a part with Burke County adolescents and how they develop.  At Table Rock Middle we observed no teasing among students in regard to fashion or wealth.  The economy may be a contributing factor as most of the students appear to be on the same socio-economic level.  Nearly all the businesses in Burke County are owned by white men. The white population also has the highest average income among all other ethnic groups.

Only 67.6% of the people in Burke County have a high school diploma, and less than 15% have a Bachelor Degree or higher.

Burke County’s property tax rate is the highest of all surrounding counties at 52 cents per $1000.