Dropout Prevention

Did you know that every 26 seconds a student drops out of high school? That is 6-7,000 kids lost every school day, or 1.2 million kids lost every year. Among African-American and Hispanic students the graduation rate is about 55 percent, or roughly one of every two students.

What does life hold for the students who drop out?

Over their lifetime, a high school dropout will earn $260,000 less than someone who completes high school and $1 million less than someone who completes college. Education means better health. According to the Centers for Disease Control, The U.S. death rate for those with fewer than 12 years of education is 2.5 times higher than the rate of those with 13 years of education or more. A high school dropout is 8 times more likely than a high school graduate to go to jail.

What about the societal cost of dropouts?

A 5 percent increase in the number of male high school graduates would save the nation almost $5 billion in costs associated with incarceration. Dropouts from the class of 2004 will cost the nation more than $325 billion in lost productivity, taxes, and wages over their lifetime.

Why do kids drop out?

A 2005 survey of high school dropouts provided some very interesting insights into why kids drop out. The survey, conducted for the Gates Foundation, showed that of those who dropped out:

  • Almost half (47 percent) cited a lack of interest in class among the reasons for dropping out. They reported being bored and disengaged from high school. Incidentally, many who gave this reason also had higher grade-point averages and hung around with people who had dropped out.
  • Almost 70 percent said they were not motivated or inspired to work hard. Many of them felt that they could have graduated had more been demanded of them academically.
  • Many had to drop out for personal reasons ranging from the need to get a job and help support the family to pregnancy.
Content on this page provided by the ASCD Whole Child. The Whole Child initiative provides a compelling resource, click here to download, A Developmental Perspective on College & Workplace Readiness.

To learn more about Dropout Prevention visit:

Communities in School "Helping Kids Stay in School and Prepare for Life"

Read "A Technical Report "Dropout Risk Factors and Exemplary Programs"

The Michigan Education Association is a proud pilot or the new Dropout Challenge, "One Dropout is Too Many"

Center for Educational Performance and Information

"In order to comply with The No child left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001 and, as defined in The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) Consolidated State Application Accountability Workbook, the state of Michigan must move to an accountability system for high schools in which a graduation rate includes only "on-time" graduates who earn diplomas in four years. This calculation aligns with the guidelines provided by the National Governors Association (NGA) Graduation Counts Compact and the United States Department of Education (USED)."

Reaching and Teaching Struggling Learners Initiative

The Reaching and Teaching Struggling Learners (RTSL) Initiative, a Michigan Department of Education (MDE), Office of Special Education and Early Intervention Services (OSE-EIS) mandated activities initiative, strives to ensure positive outcomes for struggling learners by exploring effective secondary school practices and their impact on ALL students. The initiative is designed to reduce the risk of dropout. Staying in school is not enough. These teams support students to success following their high school experience.
Address: 6412 Centurion Drive Suite 130
Lansing, MI 48917

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