Reconsidering Dropout Prevention by Understanding Dropouts

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Gillis, Eddie
Dropouts , Dropout Typlogies , Neurocognition , Stress , Typologies , Graduation Rates , Poverty , Engagment , Disengagement , Understanding Dropouts , Early School Leavers , The Effects of Poverty
ABSTRACT Knowing that the decision to leave school before graduating has a dramatic effect on the lives of the people who make this choice, why would anyone leave school before graduating from high school in Canada? School is important, and parents bring their children to school brimming with the hope their children will do well. Notwithstanding this hope, every elementary school classroom in Canada has two or more children who are likely to drop out of school. If these children live in an inner-city or a reserve, the likelihood they will not graduate increases dramatically. In fact, Grade 1 teachers who teach on reserves in Canada can look at the students in their classrooms and know that more than half of these students are unlikely to graduate. This project is an attempt to address this issue by understanding more about why students drop out, particularly students who are disadvantaged due to low socioeconomic status (SES) and/or Aboriginal status. It consists of a general introduction to the topic (Chapter 1), an extensive review of theories with respect to dropping out (Chapter 2), two workshops, one to increase understanding of these theories and another that addresses the effects poverty has on the neurocognitive development of children (Chapter 3), and reflections on the process (Chapter 4). It is largely intended for teachers and administrators who would like to understand the dropout phenomenon and increase graduation rates for disadvantaged students.
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