Objective The aim of this study was to assess the associations of gingival bleeding with individual and community social variables among schoolchildren. Methods This cross-sectional study evaluated a representative, multistage, random sample of 1,134 12-year-old schoolchildren from Santa Maria, a city in southern Brazil. The participants were examined clinically, and full-mouth gingival bleeding was recorded according to the Community Periodontal Index criteria (scored as healthy or bleeding). The children’s parents or guardians answered questions regarding their socioeconomic status and social capital, and an assessment of the associations was performed using multilevel Poisson regression models. Results The prevalence of gingival bleeding was 96.21 percent. The multilevel adjusted assessment revealed that socioeconomic, clinical, and social capital variables at the individual level were associated with higher levels of gingival bleeding. Children whose fathers had a low educational level, children who had dental plaque and dental crowding, and children who never/almost never attended religious meetings exhibited significantly higher levels of gingival bleeding than their counterparts. This social gradient remained significant even after adjusting for contextual-level covariates. Conclusion The results indicate that the socioeconomic status and features of social capital are associated with the levels of gingival bleeding among schoolchildren.