25th Annual National Dropout Prevention Network Conference

November 3 - 6, 2013
Crowne Plaza Ravinia
Atlanta, GA

Conference Information
& Registration

Additional Professional Development Opportunities:

26th Annual At-Risk Youth National FORUM
February 16-20, 2014
"Providing Hope and Support In and Beyond the Classroom"
Embassy Suites at Kingston Plantation, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

2014 National Forum on Dropout Prevention for Native and Tribal Communities
April 27-30, 2014
"Building Engaging Educational Communities for Native Students"
Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel, Prior Lake, Minnesota

Sale of the Month

Strategies for Adolescence: Turning It Around for Middle-School Students
by Connie Tait, Ph.D.
The National Dropout Prevention Center/Network is pleased to offer this publication at a reduced price. This publication presents a discussion of five major areas (school violence, bullying, depression, substance abuse, and truancy) that have been witnessed to have influenced an increase in middle school students being at risk of negative outcomes. Consequences and interventions are discussed as well. Ordering Information

Call for Manuscripts
Engage: The International Journal of Research and Practice on Student Engagement

We are accepting manuscripts for consideration for the spring 2014 issue. Please refer to the Call for Manuscripts on our Web site. The articles for ENGAGE range from academic to practical (or a mix) and our goal is to include at least one article written by a young person or persons who are from various cultures and nations and who are engaged in school, or who were disengaged and are reengaging with school. The online format of this journal allows for videos and multiple pictures to supplement the articles. Contact us at engage@dropoutprevention.org with any questions.

Is your school up to PAR?

Are your trend lines for student achievement for each subgroup of students meeting your goals? Are you satisfied with parent/community involvement in your school? Do you have evidence that pro-active, appropriate, and varied interventions are in place and are monitored to support struggling students? Your answers to these and other questions may signal that your school or school district is due a Program Assessment and Review (PAR). This process from the National Dropout Prevention Center/Network (NDPC/N) can help you identify issues, review recommended solutions, and begin an action plan to turn things around. Browse this overview and contact NDPC/N (phone: 864-656-2599; email: ndpc@clemson.edu) for further details or to schedule a PAR.

Top Stories
Dropout Indicators Found for 1st Graders. As student tracking databases grow ever more extensive, educators are finding that the early-warning signs of a student at risk of dropping out may become visible at the very start of their school careers.

Can an algorithm ID high-school dropouts in first grade? Early warning systems to detect high-school dropouts are all the rage in education data circles. What if researchers could use grades, attendance and behavior data to identify at-risk students as early as first grade, giving counselors and others more time to intervene or motivate these kids and keep them in school?

Out of School and Off Track: The Overuse of Suspensions in American Middle and High Schools. The findings of this report from UCLA Civil Rights Project highlight critical concerns related to the high frequency of secondary school suspensions.

The Link Between Suspension and Dropout. Understanding How Suspension Can Lead to Dropout.

Back-to-School Stories: What Reporters Have to Do With the Education Debate. It's a challenge to cover a yearly occurrence as if it's new, but how reporters write these stories can subtly affect the national dialogue over our schools.

Effective Strategies
Family Engagement
Family Engagement in Education Act Introduced in Congress. Bipartisan legislation that would encourage the creation of stronger family-school partnerships was introduced in Congress on July 11.

National PTA Commends Bipartisan Family Engagement Legislation. The Family Engagement in Education Act of 2013 was introduced in the House and the Senate as a means to empower parents, improve capacity for states, and provide much-needed resources for schools to improve family engagement.

Individualized Instruction
The Use of Individualized Learning Plans (ILPs) to Help Students to Be College and Career Ready. ILPs are tools that many states have adopted or are considering legislating to provide middle school and high school students vehicles to define their personal interests, goals, and course choices for secondary through postsecondary education and careers. In this webinar, five presenters summarize research findings and discuss experiences implementing and scaling up the use of ILPs.

Safe Learning Environments
The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) has released "Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2012." This report, a joint effort by BJS and the National Center for Education Statistics, provides the most current data on crime and safety at school. The report contains 21 indicators of school crime from a variety of sources, including national surveys of students, teachers, and principals.

High School Credit for Expanded Learning Opportunities in Providence, Rhode Island. This webinar from the American Youth Policy Forum highlights the unique initiative in Providence, Rhode Island, and describes the goals of the program, how the program is organized, the relationship between the afterschool providers and the school district, how credit is awarded, and implications for advancing student learning.

Whatever Happened to Joy in Education? Watch this YouTube video of Dean Shareski at TEDx Vancouver.

The GED Is Changing: Evidence Suggests GED Prep Courses Should Change Too. In January 2014, a new GED is coming to town. In the United States, nearly 40 million adults lack a high school diploma. Of these adults, less than two percent actually take the GED exam and just one percent pass it. Timely and encouraging findings shed light on one way to change the course of these unfortunate trends: improve GED instruction.

Despite Common Core, States Still Lack Common Standards. Students score proficient on state tests but not on national tests.

The Effects of Mandatory Retention and Its Use Across the Globe. Recent policies enacted by states and school districts across the United States have reawakened the debate on mandatory grade retention. Since 2012, 14 states and the District of Columbia have adopted mandatory retention policies aimed at students who can’t read proficiently by the third grade.

Upcoming College and Career Readiness and Success Events from the College & Career Readiness & Success Center blog at the American Institutes for Research.

Youth Service Professionals’ Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (YSP/KSA) Professional Development Demonstration and Evaluation. With support from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Youth) seeks to demonstrate the value of and further grow a professional development system for youth service professionals to improve program quality and service delivery for all youth, including youth with disabilities.

The Money You Don’t Know You Have for School Turnaround: Maximizing the Title I Schoolwide Model is the newest publication from Mass Insight Education’s State Development Network for School Turnaround, in partnership with the Federal Education Group. This toolkit clarifies the spending rules that apply to supporting schoolwide improvement programs with Title I dollars, and provides considerations for states, school districts, and schools that want to rethink the way they use Title I funds.

Youth Service Improvement Grants from the William T. Grant Foundation.

P. Buckley Moss Foundation: Educator Grants. P. Buckley Moss Foundation Educator Grants aid and support teachers who wish to establish an effective learning tool using the arts for teaching children with learning disabilities and other special needs.

Resources & Tools
Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS). The Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) monitors six types of health-risk behaviors that contribute to the leading causes of death and disability among youth and adults.

Smithsonian Center for Education and Museum Studies.

Google in Education: Tools and Solutions.

Intel Tools for Student-Centered Learning.

We appreciate comments from our readers. We invite new subscribers to receive the Dropout Prevention Update via our Sign-up Form. Please feel free to contact us at ndpc@clemson.edu