ERIC Number: ED289095
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-Mar-5
Reference Count: N/A
School Dropouts--Why Does the Problem Prevail?
Ruby, Theodore; Law, Robert
The national dropout rate has remained at about 20% for the last decade. However, disparities in the definition of dropouts and in data collection have caused national dropout figures to vary. Researchers agree that students from areas of large minority populations with fewer English-speaking students, and those living in poverty are at risk of dropping out. The reason most often cited for dropping out is a general dislike of school. Dropping out is often the beginning of problems for the individual and society. Many dropouts will remain unemployed, others will take low paying jobs. Dropout prevention programs attempt to reduce the number of students leaving school by improving attendance and academics. More recently, alternative schools have added a humanistic approach to dropout programs. Successful programs have been found to separate potential dropouts from other students, stress the immediate and practical, offer opportunities for paid employment, and maintain low student-teacher ratios. Adolescence has been found to be a critical stage for identifying potential dropouts and for reversing negative attitudinal and behavior trends. Parents' lack of support for education is related to their children's negative attitudes toward school. In elementary school, home-school communication can insure parents develop positive attitudes toward education. Junior high school is the critical period for the identification of potential school dropouts and various out-of-school interventions, such as community support and civic involvement, should be used. In senior high school, intervention programs should concentrate on keeping the students in school until they have reached their maximum educational potential and/or have acquired adequate life skills. (ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - General; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association of School Psychologists (19th, New Orleans, LA, March 4-8, 1987).