It’s undeniable that a college degree is a pathway to better professional opportunities. But before students can obtain higher education, they must first get a diploma from a high school or a Charter school Gainesville, FL. And unfortunately, a surprising number of young Americans do not make it out of high school.
The rate of high school students dropping out is a serious concern in the education system of the United States. Each year, the country sees over 1.2 million students discontinue their studies due to various reasons.
To combat this, districts have been trying to improve graduation rates by offering dropout recovery programs. However, even these efforts are not without their challenges. So how can students, educators, and government officials make the most out of these programs?
Eyes on the Prize
For students, it’s quite simple. Successfully getting through a dropout recovery program will require a tremendous amount of dedication.
Most students don’t return to high school to pursue a secondary education. Instead, most of them sign up for dropout recovery programs so that they can secure jobs that pay better than what they can currently get.
It helps to research what opportunities await after obtaining a high school diploma and what it will take to achieve that goal. That way, students will have an objective, which can inspire them when academic difficulties become seemingly overwhelming.
Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
Going back to high school or a charter school in Gainesville, FL will not be an easy situation for many students. In the first place, many of them had to drop out because of difficult circumstances. For that reason, it’s important to provide as much support as possible.
Besides providing quality education, teachers can help their students by making sure they’re equipped with the resources they need outside of the classroom. Ask the students if they are getting an ample supply of food or if they have a reliable means of transportation. That way, they can be connected to the right channels that can help them.
Most programs depend on charitable foundations and grant funding. The problem, however, is that these are temporary sources of income. And should financial support fluctuate, that could have a huge impact on dropout recovery students.
The co-founder of Graduation Alliance, Rebekah Richards, told Education Dive that this type of financial model wouldn’t produce the outcome that states are hoping for. According to her, the funding for these programs has to be stable and systematic.
In Texas, several districts are encouraging students to aim for a college degree rather than only finishing high school through dropout recovery. They do this by allowing them to take community college courses–for free–while they are finishing high school. In some cases, these courses were enough to earn them an associate’s degree or a training certificate.
Pharr-San Juan-Alamo School District Superintendent Daniel King has demonstrated how empowering students resulted in a better graduation rate. When he assumed his position back in 2007, he was facing a dropout rate of 18 percent.
To tackle this alarming problem, King teamed up with South Texas College to create the College, Career, & Technology Academy (CCTA). By 2008, about 130 had earned their diplomas from the program.
These efforts resulted in a drastic decline in the district’s dropout rate–from 18 percent in 2007 to only 3.1 percent five years later.
A multitude of problems is associated with dropping out of school. These include fewer job opportunities, financial troubles, and a higher probability of getting in trouble with the criminal justice system, per Northeastern University Center for Labor Market Studies’ report in 2007.
On top of that, dropping out of school can have a significant impact on an individual’s self-esteem. Thinking that a lack of skills and knowledge may be a hindrance from fulfilling one’s aspirations can give people immense psychological stress and anxiety. But that’s what recovery programs are for–to give thousands of individuals a second chance and a renewed hope.
In the end, the ultimate goal of dropout recovery programs should be preparing students for life in general, not just college. But these programs will only yield successful results if students, teachers, and government officials all do their part.