The Dropout Issue
Every 26 seconds a student drops out of high school.
This dropout rate adds up to 3,300 students per day or 1.2 million students per year, which is roughly the entire population of the state of Maine. (U.S. Department of Education 2015).
Students who do not graduate from high school are at a great disadvantage. In Texas, studies have indicated that by not having a high school diploma, dropouts experience unemployment at a rate four times higher than a high school graduate and make $7,000 less per year than high school graduates. The decrease in earnings, the loss of tax revenue and the amount of welfare payments high school drop outs receive have an estimated negative annual economic impact of over $9 billon (The ABCD’s of Texas Education: Assessing the Benefits and Costs of Reducing the Dropout Rate 2009).
By not having a high school diploma, students are grossly limited in their ability to support themselves and their families. Given the wide reaching effects a high school dropout has on individuals, families, and communities, it is imperative that the dropout epidemic be addressed. Research indicates that providing mentors or adult advocates for students at risk of dropping out of school is an effective dropout prevention strategy to help students address learning, social, and emotional needs that are barriers to academic achievement (Texas Education Agency 2015).
A study conducted by the National Dropout Prevention Center/Network and ICF International found that CIS of Houston case-managed students received services that positively influenced the likelihood of a student staying in school. Over the last five years CIS of Houston has kept 99% of case managed students in school.