Model Program

Dropout Prevention Initiative (DPI)

201 W. Graham Rd
Richmond, VA 23222

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Contact Information:
Mrs. Angela L. Jones, Ed.S.

Program Specification:






Limited Evidence of Effectiveness

Age/Grade Level:

Target Settings:

Target Groups:

High School

Inner City



Other Participation Criteria:

All Ethnicities


The RPS Dropout Prevention Initiative is a targeted, multi-tiered and comprehensive dropout prevention, intervention and recovery program that addresses the needs of potential dropouts, students who have dropped out and their families. Program includes dedicated recovery specialists to recover students, a single point of entry for enrollment, intake counselors and school social workers and CIS counselors to assess and address social needs, an individual learning plan to review and address academic concerns, prevention specialists to address life and "soft" skills, and connections with mentors. Students are also paired with caring instructional staff for added support and encouragement.

Program Descriptors Include:
Academic Improvement, Adult Education, Attendance/Truancy, Community Collaboration, Computer Assisted Instruction, Counseling/Advisories/Coaches, Credit Recovery, GED, Literacy Development, Mentoring/Tutoring, Teen Pregnancy, Virtual Learning

Strategies for Locating Students:
Phone calls, Home visits, Personalized letters, Television ads/radio announcements, Materials distributed in public venues, Posters displayed in public places, Outreach conducted at locations/events attended by youth, Public events focused on dropout recovery, Current students asked to recruit friends, School or district teams to track students, Collaboration with social service agencies/community-based organizations, Collaboration with law enforcement

Starting Date: 2010
Students Served Per Year: 50-250
Reenrolled Students with Disabilities: 16-20%
Last Verified: 2011

Risk Factors:

Protective Factors:

Program addresses the following:

Individual factors

  • Has a learning disability or emotional disturbance
  • Parenthood
  • Low achievement
  • Poor attendance
  • Low educational expectations
  • Low commitment to school
  • Early aggression

Family factors

  • Low socioeconomic status
  • High family mobility
  • Not living with both natural parents
  • Family disruption
  • Low educational expectations
  • Low contact with school
  • Lack of conversations about school

School factors

  • School math achievement
  • School policies and practices
  • Student engagement

Community factors

  • Family composition/socioeconomic status
  • Youth social attitudes

Program promotes the following:


  • Presence and involvement of caring, supportive adults
  • Opportunities and rewards for pro-social involvement
  • Clear social norms
  • Good relationships with parents, peers, and teachers
  • Perception of support from adults and peers


  • Healthy/conventional beliefs and standards
  • Positive/resilient temperament


  • Social competencies
  • Self efficacy


  • Problem-solving skills
  • Flexibility


  • Optimistic


  • Personalized instruction and learning
  • Rigorous and relevant instruction
  • Academic support
  • Instruction on behavior and social skills
  • Supportive school climate
  • Teach self-determination and self-advocacy skills including student/person-centered planning
  • Eliminate practices that push students out of school
  • Help students to address problems that interfere with learning

Program Resources:

Annual Cost:

The annual cost range of the program is less than $25,000 or less than $500 per student.

Funding Sources Include:

Program Staff Includes:

School Districts
Service Clubs

Social Workers
Graduation Coaches
School Administrators

Materials Used:

Supporting / Partner Organizations:

Instructional Texts/Manuals
Computer/Internet Based

Communities in Schools, Justice Services, Richmond Mayor's Office, Department of Social Services, Richmond Behavioral Health Authority, Higher education institutions, faith and community-based partners

Evaluation Information:

During the first six months of program implementation, 80 students were enrolled in the program. Of those initial 80 students 8 students completed school with a high school diploma. The impact of the program is measured by graduation / program completion; periodic evaluation of academic progress as well as subjective measures including mentor and student feedback.

How evaluation data was collected:
Data collected and analyzed at school/district level