Monday, September 27, 2010

School Drop Outs

According to the Carnegie Council on Adolescent Development, remaining in school is the single most important action adolescents can take to improve their future economic prospects. Individual state laws, along with innovative dropout prevention programs have helped reduce the number of teens dropping out of schools nationwide.

A variety of factors influence whether or not a teen will do poorly or succeed in school. We know from research that students who do poorly in school tend to believe their success or failure is beyond their control, while students who do well tend to believe their success is because they are smart, and any failure is because they did not try hard enough. To help, parents can applaud their children’s ability when they do well in school and their effort when they do poorly.

In addition, students whose parents were not involved in their school are more likely to repeat a grade, be suspended or expelled, have poor grades and have behavior problems compared to those whose parents are involved.

While most parents want their children to do well in school, by the time teens reach 12th grade, only half of parents are involved in school activities, such as attending a school meeting or event. It is especially important for parents of teens to remain involved in their school. Creating partnerships among schools, parents and key community organizations in joint responsibility for adolescents’ educational achievement and healthy development can continue to reduce the number of kids dropping out of school.


What to Know about Dropping Out of School: A publication for professionals who work with adolescents and the parents of adolescents, (1998), Kathleen Boyce Rodgers, University of Tennessee Agricultural Extension Service.

Great Transitions: Preparing Adolescents for a New Century: Concluding Report of the Carnegie Council on Adolescent Development. Carnegie Corporation of New York. (October, 1995). New York, NY.

Steinberg, L. & Levine, A. (1990). You and your adolescent: A parent’s guide for ages 10-20. New York: Harper Collins, 1990.

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