ERIC Number: ED316944
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1988
Reference Count: N/A
Student Dropout Problem: Implications for Policymakers.
Matranga, Myrna; Mitchell, Douglas E.
Over 35 percent of all Western Region students (in Arizona, California, Nevada, and Utah) entering the ninth grade in 1980 failed to complete high school. This paper provides education policy makers with an overall understanding of the Western Region dropout problem, reviews available research, analyzes alternative change strategies, and briefly describes three categories of specific policy options. Students' decisions to leave school are shaped by numerous interrelated factors, including personal reasons, family characteristics, and disappointments in the school. Schools contribute to school leaving by creating dull and uninspiring programs, allowing staff insensitivity to student needs, and failing to develop effective management systems to identify, track, and serve the needs of at-risk students. Promising approaches to reducing early exit behavior must deal with student "disconnectedness" and address three policy levels--the community, the school, and the individual staff member. Coordinated change at all levels is required for maximum effectiveness. Six strategies for reducing school leaving can be identified: risk management, environmental management, incentive management, program management, staff management, and culture management. Three policy options are available: (1) strengthening school cultures and programs; (2) retaining at-risk youth; and (3) enhancing career and vocational programs. (134 references) (MLH)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Arizona; California; Nevada; Utah