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ERIC Number: ED538868
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Sep
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
Getting Latino Youth through High School: Aspirations and Family Support Can Offset Obstacles. New Journalism on Latino Children
Rivera, Carla
Institute of Human Development (NJ1)
From the 3rd grade to the 11th grade, Jorge Martinez walked out of his front door each day hating the prospect of going to school. For most of those days, Martinez, now 17, was a target of bullies. But that was only half of it. There was discord at home. He says he was lazy and unmotivated, preferring to spend his time in front of the television, distracted from his troubles. As a result, he was failing most of his subjects with a 1.1 GPA. Jose Lara will soon be 17 but has only earned enough credits to be in the 9th grade. He has frequently dropped out or been suspended, spending more time out of school than in. The experiences of students like Martinez and Lara mirror those of others around the nation struggling to find their way. The hurdles are significant. The average Latino 25 and older has completed 11 years of schooling, compared to 14 years for Asians and whites and 13 years for blacks, according to a 2008 research paper by Francisco L. Rivera-Batiz, professor of economics and education at Teachers College, Columbia University. Latinos pay a steep price for leaving school: A 2007 report by the California Dropout Research Project found that, at age 20, the expected lifetime earnings for a Hispanic male dropout will be $598,000, versus $825,000 for a high school graduate. In trying to answer the question of why more Latinos drop out, researchers cite a combination of poverty, lack of literacy skills and low quality of schooling. Educators say that students do respond to intensive outreach, and a number of preventive programs nationwide are finding success. This paper discusses programs that work in increasing high school graduation rates and college attendance among Latinos. (Contains 5 resources.)
Institute of Human Development. University of California Berkeley, 1121 Tolman Hall #1690, Berkeley, CA 94720. Tel: 510-642-7239; Fax: 510-642-7969; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Marguerite Casey Foundation
Authoring Institution: University of California, Berkeley. Institute of Human Development (IHD)