The good news is that RPS Superintendent Yvonne Brandon realizes the city schools have a drop-out problem. The bad news is the plan unveiled on October 21, 2009 doesn't mention any effort to reduce Richmond's excessive use of out-of-school suspensions, a factor many education experts say is a major contributor to high drop-out rates.
Read this article posted on CNN by urban education expert Pedro Noguera to see why it is so critical that urban school systems find ways to combat the epidemic drop-out rate, more virulent and deadly than the swine flu pandemic.
In an effort to be a part of the solution and foster discussion, I ask that you check out the following links that offer insights into WHY students drop-out and how we can to get them back. Most importantly, these links also reveal proactive ways we can work together as a community to prevent students from leaving in the first place.
Overview of PBIS Maryland
universal PBIS model. Thus, the PBISplus Project was collaboratively developed by Johns Hopkins. University, the Maryland State Department of ...
www.pbismaryland.org/documents/PBISMarylandNew... - Similar
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Retention Research: Studies About Keeping Kids in School
The following reports provide valuable insight into the causes of and solutions for the dropout crisis plaguing many of our schools and communities:
"The Silent Epidemic: Perspectives of High School Dropouts"
This 2006 report, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is based on interviews with young men and women who dropped out of high school. The findings debunk some of the commonly held myths about why students decide to drop out of school. (For example, a majority of the young people who were interviewed had at least a C average when they dropped out, and nearly 47 percent reported that they dropped out because school was not interesting.) Embedded in these insights are useful strategies for addressing the crisis.
"What Your Community Can Do to End Its Drop-Out Crisis" Drawing on research from schools and districts throughout the country, this report provides a unique guide to tackling the issue locally. It begins with strategies for developing a deep understanding of local needs and then guides readers step by step through the creation of a comprehensive plan to assist students inside and outside of school.
School-Caused Risk Factors
Ineffective discipline system
Overburdened school counselors
Negative school climate
Retention and/or suspensions used to control discipline, rather than addressing causes
Disregarding student learning styles
Passive instructional strategies
Lack of relevant curriculum
Low expectations of student achievement
Fear of school violence
Excerpted from From At Risk to Academic Excellence: What Successful Leaders Do by Franklin P. Schargel, Tony Thacker, and John S. Bell.