Public School Dropout
Write a 3-page research paper on At-risk children in public schools
Referencing the documentary: Dropout Nation
1. 5 sources in APA format with a bibliography (all 5 sources must be cited in your paper)
-3 of the 5 sources must come from scholarly journals
-Other 2 sources can be your choice, but these must be credible
2. multiple paragraphs (at least 3 pages in double space)
Body paragraph should include:
- What are characteristics of at-risk children?
- What resources/support are available for at-risk children?
- What can schools do to intervene?
- What ethical issues can be involved?
- What laws have been passed in order to help those at-risk?
3. Bibliography page
Public School Dropout
Dropping out of public school is an issue of concern in the present environment with the need for stakeholder involvement in the mitigation of the issue becoming important. As an act of failing to complete a public school or university course, dropping out of public school requires the participation of all the individuals involved in curbing the issue. As such, to tackle the increasing number of dropouts, the education systems need to identify the risk factors and implement strategic approaches to curbing the issue. Further, the involvement of the parents and educational stakeholders is fundamental to necessitate a reduced level of dropouts. Therefore this paper will examine the issue of dropping out of public schools as per the case questions.
- Characteristics of at-risk children
Characteristics of children at-risk of dropping out exude certain characteristics that can easily be identified. As such, the immediate environment plays a significant role in determining the risk factors towards dropping out. Therefore, from the analysis of children, some of the characteristics include:
Demographic characteristics entail facets such as family size, age, income levels and racial status. From the analysis of Hahn, et al., (2015) at-risk children comprise of those from ethnically minority groups, whose age is older than the average age in their grade and emanate from the low-income families. Apart from the racial minority, age, income, and gender play a direct role with more males dropping out as compared to female students (Koughan, 2012).
School performance attributes:
The performance also influences the prospect of dropping out. From the analysis of diverse students, it is evident that lack of credits, especially at higher levels of institutional learning influences dropping out Roderick, Kelley-Kemple, Johnson & Beechum, (2014). Further, dismal grades in core units coupled with poor attendance influence the dropping out of individuals.
Individualized risk factors
Individualized characteristics entail the intrinsic perspective about education or a given course. Students who find a class not interesting or show a reduced level of engagement in most instances dropout. Further, the perception of a student regarding the teaching staff can influence the interest towards completion of education (Roderick, Kelley-Kemple, Johnson & Beechum, 2014).
Guardian/parental influence on personal education: in most instances, parents have a direct influence on the performance of a student. Parents or guardians who show little or no involvement in the education of the child directly influence the educational interest of the individual Roderick (Kelley-Kemple, Johnson & Beechum, 2014).
- Resources/support available for at-risk children
Dropout prevention is important to reduce its prevalence. As such, there is need to emphasize on resources coupled with support to assist at-risk children. Therefore, among the resources/support available for at-risk children include:
Technical resources: Various online sources available provide at-risk students with information on how to access support mechanisms. Additionally, there is literature available to assist to children to comprehend the effects of dropping out (Reynolds, Temple, Robertson & Mann, 2011).
Institutional support/resources: various institutes of learning have been adopting initiatives geared towards mitigating the increased number of dropouts. As a clear example, there is the Institute of Education Science (IES) has implemented the What Works Clearinghouse that is geared towards investing into various intervention programs to ensure effective mitigation of dropout among individuals (Roderick, Kelley-Kemple, Johnson & Beechum, 2014). As such, there is the IES website that provides a direct intervention program in which individuals can communicate with available counselors.
- What can public schools do to intervene?
Public schools through their teaching staff have a direct interaction with the at-risk children. Therefore, the close-knit relationship requires that the public schools invest into distinct approaches to ensure that successful intervention prevails to mitigate the rate of dropouts (Balfanz, Herzog & Mac Iver, 2009). As such, among the initiatives that public schools can undertake to mitigate public school dropout include:
- Comprehensive improvement programs: improvement programs should focus on developing multiple initiatives towards ensuring that the public school environment is enabling for students. Establishment of counseling programs, additional extra-curricular programs, and emphasis on ensuring that students comprehend the need for education should lead to students appreciate the learning institution (Lehr, et al., 2014).
- Strategies to enhance the students’ sense of belonging: students, especially from ethnic minority groups, need to be accepted in the institution (Reynolds, Temple, Robertson & Mann, 2011). Hence, creating awareness of their distinctive culture in a positive manner should necessitate an environment whereby the individuals feel accepted
- Heightening student engagement: student engagement by the various stakeholders, such as teachers, parents, and education sector leaders, should be in a first-hand (Balfanz, Herzog & Mac Iver, 2009). The various stakeholders should be involved in a direct manner in evaluating the progress of the learning process of the students.
- What ethical issues can be involved?
Addressing public school dropout is dependent on the development of stringent approaches to ensure successful mitigation (Koughan, 2012). Most importantly, addressing the ethical implications especially in undertaking research is fundamental. From the research undertaken by Hahn, et al., (2015) among the ethical issues that require analysis include:
- It is imperative to safeguard the interests of the at-risk children which is inclusive of consideration of the possible outcomes and the deviation from misusing the results
- Developing a universalistic approach to handling public school dropout with major emphasis on the ethnic minorities
- Ensuring that there is commitment towards listening and including the perspectives of children and young in the decision making
- What laws have been passed to help those at-risk?
There is a State-level intervention approach geared towards reducing the prevalence of dropping out. From the analysis of the different States, the emphasis has been towards ensuring that there are various boards to counter the increasing dropouts (Balfanz, Herzog & Mac Iver, 2009). Therefore, among the laws and State legislation evident in dropout prevention includes:
- States such as Georgia, North Carolina, and Chicago have implemented a mandatory guideline for public high public schools to hire a graduation coach whose responsibility is identifying at-risk students and assist them in counseling and ensuring that their academics are on the upward trend (Balfanz, Herzog & Mac Iver, 2009).
- Indiana’s HB 1794 legislation in 2005 was focused on ensuring that there is the establishment of 18years as the only acceptable dropout age (Balfanz, Herzog & Mac Iver, 2009). Individuals, less than 18 years of age cannot drop out. There is the emphasis on the provision of information on public school progress in addressing dropout and the review of the child’s career plan (Reynolds, Temple, Robertson & Mann, 2011).
It is fundamental to comprehend that
student dropout is an issue of concern that translates into social and economic
problems across the US and globally. In the US, numerous students leave public
school before graduating which requires comprehensive intervention programs.
From the above analysis, it is imperative that the diverse stakeholders are
involved in tackling the problem. Involvement of the parents, teaching staff
and private institutions in the intervention programs should be a foundation
towards mitigating public school dropout.
Balfanz, R., Herzog, L., & Mac Iver, D. J. (2009). Preventing Student Disengagement and Keeping Students on the Graduation Path in Urban Middle-Grades Schools: Early Identification and Effective Interventions. Educational Psychologist, 42(4), 223-235.
Hahn, R. A., Knopf, J. A., Wilson, S. J., Truman, B. I., Milstein, B., Johnson, R. L., … & Moss, R. D. (2015). Programs to Increase High School Completion: A Community Guide Systematic Health Equity Review. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 48(5), 599-608.
Koughan, F. (2012). Dropout Nation. Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/film/dropout-nation/
Lehr, C. A., Johnson, D. R., Bremer, C. D., Cosio, A., & Thompson, M. (2014). Essential Tools: Increasing Rates of School Completion: Moving from Policy and Research to Practice. Minneapolis, MN: National Center on Secondary Education and Transition.
Reynolds, A. J., Temple, J. A., Robertson, D. L., & Mann, E. A. (2011). Long-Term Effects of an Early Childhood Intervention on Educational Achievement and Juvenile Arrest: A 15-Year Follow-up of Low-Income Children in Public Schools. Jama, 285(18), 2339-2346.
Roderick, M., Kelley-Kemple, T., Johnson, D. W., & Beechum, N. O. (2014). Preventable Failure: Improvements in Long-Term Outcomes When High Schools Focused on the Ninth Grade Year. Research Summary. The University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research. 1313 East 60th Street, Chicago, IL 60637.