ERIC Number: ED380343
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Apr
The Impact of Social Support on Staying in School: A Preliminary Report.
Rosenthal, Beth Spenciner
This study analyzed survey research conducted in 1992 in a suburban metropolitan New York City community, predominantly white, with an 18 percent black, a 4 percent Asian and 4 percent Latino population. The community had an 11% poverty rate. The longitudinal study questioned 305 10th-graders, most of them born outside the United States, by self-administered questionnaires. A theoretical base for the study was established by reviewing the research available on the social bonding theory. By examining family's, friends' and ethnic group's valuing of education, using Likert-type scales for analyses, social and personal influences in school staying plans were noted. Family and friends had a greater influence on staying in school than did ethnic groups. For females, the greater impact on the decision for school staying was from peers; for males, the family had a greater influence. Limitations of the study focused on: (1) the narrow geographic range of subject group and the high school staying plans of the sample; (2) the restricted range of responses; (3) the first phase of the longitudinal study making the variable choice "school staying plans," instead of "dropout," which may be a more appropriate term; and (4) the sample, which was comprised of approximately 15-year-old 10th grade students, making interpretations of data difficult. Recommendations for dropout prevention focused on enhancing social support for remaining in school and creating new primary social groups for bonding. (EH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 4-8, 1994).