Why Re-Engaging Teens is Critical

The Epidemic Of Disengaged Teens

Failing to complete high school has severe economic and social consequences for individuals and for society. Students who leave high school without a diploma forfeit a lifetime of opportunities, making it far more likely that their children will grow up in poverty and become “dis-engaged.” Dropouts are more likely to:

  • Be unemployed; and when they do find work, they generally earn less money than high school graduates.
  • Receive public assistance than are high school graduates.
  • Constitute a disproportionate percentage of the nation’s prisoners and death row inmates.

Each of these outcomes reflect not only individual costs to the dropout, but also costs to society through unemployment compensation, private charitable relief, public assistance, and the cost of correctional services.

Arizona’s Drop Out Rate

Arizona’s high school dropout rate is among the highest in the nation and improving student outcomes and graduation rates positively serves the student, their families, their local community, and Arizona. The Institute of Education Sciences (IES), within the U.S. Department of Education, provides rigorous evidence on which to base educational policy and practices. IES publishes practice guides to provide educators with the best available evidence and expertise on current challenges in education. In 2017, IES published a guide targeted to school and district administrators, providing recommendations that can be implemented in conjunction with existing academic curricula and student-support services.

IES Recommendations

The recommendations provided by the IES in their guide are provided below as they have also had evidence of success in this proposal’s Targeted Teen Outreach Program:

  • Intimately monitor the progress of students who choose to participate in the program, and proactively intervene when these students show early signs of attendance, behavior, or academic problems.
  • Provide intensive, individualized support to students who have fallen off track and face significant challenges to success.
  • Engage students by offering curricula and programs that connect schoolwork with college and career success and that improve students’ capacity to manage challenges in and out of school.
  • For schools with many dis-engaged students, create small, personalized communities to facilitate monitoring and support.

What Can Be Done?

Re-engagement is the key.
Click below to read about our solutions to re-engage teens who have disengaged.
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