While high school dropout percentages in the U.S. are much lower today than they were a few decades ago, there is still a lot of room for improvement. How does every student who does not earn a high school diploma hurt society as a whole?
Individuals can be quick to place limitations on someone's thoughts, ideas, capabilities or potential. These types of misguided limitations can cause individuals to not achieve their potential or miss opportunities for themselves, others and society.
On the key issue of why a young person would leave school without a diploma, researchers found that 25 different factors were mentioned over and over again, with abuse, homelessness and time in juvenile detention topping the list.
Today I want to look at the underlying causes of the dropout mentality and how every student who does not earn a high school diploma hurts society as a whole. My hope is that in discovering shared traits among dropouts, we can achieve higher high school graduation rates as a nation.
Since YouthBuild was authorized as a federal program in 1992, community-based YouthBuild programs in over 270 urban and rural communities in America have welcomed and embraced more than 130,000 young people.
Pushing towards graduation is a worthy pursuit -- an important and achievable goal. And graduating 80 percent of kids on time -- phenomenal. But with these 12th grade math and reading scores, it does raise the question: What is the quality of these graduates?
America's creed does not guarantee equality of condition, but it does promise equality of opportunity. Education is fundamental to an opportunity society, and America must redouble its efforts to close its high school graduation gap.
Based off of the wealth of existing information, government could run pilot programs until they know what works best. Those programs can be rolled out in the areas that correspond with the prevalent risk factors. It will not be an easy process but it is the right thing to do.
A blizzard of education reports and studies appears every year. This swirl of information, analysis, and commentary -- some of which is contradictory -- makes it difficult to understand the condition of America's public schools. In short, are the schools getting better or worse?
The bottom line regarding a well-rounded, liberal arts education is that it has nothing to do with any kind of bottom line. It allows one to better appreciate music and art, history and literature. Very simply, it teaches one to live -- not to earn a living.
There's no question that test scores are important, but we cannot ignore the impact that chronic absenteeism has, not only on a young person's academic career, but quite possibly on the rest of his or her life.
One of the most important decisions we ever make is what we are going to grow up to be. Astronaut or the Lone Ranger score high when we are in kindergarten, but by high school, many of us are completely clueless as to what we want to do for the rest of our lives.
We believe each generation looks for new inventions, new innovation and new symbols because it considers itself to be brighter and luckier than the one before it. However, this view has been changing in the U.S.