New Survey Reveals Reasons for Dropping Out of School

j0438733According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the United States’ high school graduation rate has declined significantly. In 1970, the U.S. boasted the world’s highest rate of high school graduation; today, we are ranked at #21. The Alliance for Excellent Education reports that 7,000 American students drop out of school EVERY school day, amounting to approximately 1.3 million students each year. Clearly, our nation’s youth are struggling.

The 2012 High School Dropouts in America survey, conducted by Harris/Decima on behalf of Everest College, lists reasons younger Americans dropout of high school. The national survey of 513 adults that had dropped out of school in their teens found the following reasons for not completing high school:

  • 24% – absence of parental support
  • 21% – became a parent (teen pregnancy – women were 3 times more likely than men to leave high school for this reason)
  • 17% – missing too many days of school
  • 15% – failing classes
  • 15% – uninteresting classes
  • 15% – suffering from a mental illness
  • When it came to the issue of bullying, white respondents, more than any other racial group, cited bullying (14 percent) as a reason for dropping out.

Americans without a high school diploma or GED face tremendous challenges. The survey showed that 76% of the dropouts had either not considered getting their GED or did not believe they had the time or money available to pursue their GED. Dropouts are much more likely to be incarcerated, suffer from poverty, become unemployed, and be underpaid.

The clear takeaway from this survey is that parents have a significant role in whether their child graduates or not. Parents need to provide clear support to their teens to ensure their future success. For strategies on how to prevent your child from dropping out of school, read our previous blog Don’t Let Your Teen Become a School Dropout.

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