Vol 14, no 1 Header
National Dropout Prevention Center/Network Update
September 2014 - Vol. 14 No. 8

Dropout Prevention Update

Summary for September

  1. 26th Annual National Dropout Prevention Network Conference
  2. Solutions to the Dropout Crisis Encore
  3. NDPC/N Publication Sale of the Month
  4. Top Stories
  5. Effective Strategies
  6. Media

26th Annual National Dropout Prevention Network Conference

November 2-5, 2014

The Galt House, Louisville, KY

Conference registration is really picking up for our November Network conference, which promises to be fantastic this year, so please get your registration booked soon! Partnering with the Kentucky Department of Education, Jefferson County Public Schools, Kent State University, and others, this conference will feature eleven unique topical strands and a track specifically geared towards school administrators. The latter, led by 2009 National High School Principal of the Year, Mark Wilson, will guide school administrators in developing effective schoolwide efforts to boost student achievement and graduation rates. Keynote speakers for the conference include Hasan Davis, former Kentucky Department of Juvenile Justice Commissioner; Gene Wilhoit, the Executive Director for the Center for Innovation in Education; and Emily Kirkpatrick, the Vice President for the National Center for Families Learning. This conference promises to motivate thoroughly through the sharing of innovative concepts and practices! For more information on the conference, presenters, and registration information please visit our Web site at http://www.dropoutprevention.org/conferences.

Solutions to the Dropout Crisis

For a great way to begin your new school year, tune in Tuesday, September 9, at 3:30 PM ET, to hear excerpts from Dr. Mark Wilson’s stellar June Solutions program which offered valuable perspectives on creating positive school environments to foster student achievement. The June program was edited to an hour to fit better into tight schedules and is available here. As always, participation is free and no registration is required.

Previous webcasts are archived and can be viewed here.

Sale of the Month

Creating a Community of Learners: Using the Teacher as Facilitator Model

By K.N. Elam and M. Duckenfield

Critical to creating a place where students want to be, teachers need to learn how to be facilitative teachers. All teachers will benefit from the wisdom and experience of the exceptional leaders highlighted in this book, as they share the techniques and strategies that support facilitation. An excellent book for both pre-service and in-service staff education.

--50% off retail price-- Order your copy now.

Top Stories

The Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics (The Forum) recently released America's Young Adults: Special Issue, 2014, a report highlighting a number of key statistics regarding the education and prosperity of our nation's young adults. Chief among these findings are the following statistics:

  • In 2013, 84 percent of young adult women and 81 percent of young adult men had completed at least a high school education. These percentages were up from 79 and 75 percent, respectively, in 1980.
  • The overall college enrollment rate for 18- to 24-year-olds increased from 26 percent in 1980 to 41 percent in 2012. Among Hispanics in this age group, college enrollment during this time increased from 22 to 37 percent, the largest increase among all racial and ethnic groups.

The Forum, a collaboration of 22 federal government agencies, publishes annual reports covering over 44 statistical indicators regarding child and family welfare, with topics ranging from family structure to behavioral indicators to educational statistics. To view the full report, please visit http://childstats.gov/. The most recent statistical tables, including education statistics, are available here.

Effective Strategies

Safe Learning Environments

In July, the Justice Center's Council of State Governments, a Washington D.C. think tank issued the School Discipline Consensus Report, which highlighted the best thinking in the field on how to move from punitive-based, zero tolerance policies to more supportive practices for students in schools. “Anyone who wants to make students feel safer in school, improve high school graduation rates, and close the achievement gap needs to have a plan to reduce the number of youth who are suspended from school,” said Michael Thompson, director of the CSG Justice Center. This report was put together by a consortium of more than 100 policymakers, school administrators, teachers, behavioral health professionals, police, court leaders, probation officials, juvenile correctional leaders, parents, and youth, resulting in the development of more than two dozen policies and 60 recommendations to keep more students in productive classrooms and out of court rooms. The report's press release and further information about the Center can be found at http://csgjusticecenter.org/youth/school-discipline-consensus-report/, and the full report can be viewed at http://csgjusticecenter.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/The_School_Discipline_Consensus_Report.pdf

School-Community Collaboration

Recently, President Obama announced new financial commitments in support of the My Brother's Keeper initiative. My Brother's Keeper is President Obama's most recent educational initiative, designed to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by children of color and ensure that all young people can reach their full potential. The program employs a number of community collaboration tools to help increase the potential of underprivileged Americans, notably providing access to peer and community mentors, high-quality early education programs, and early workforce introduction programs. Below are some of the major new partnerships and commitments announced by the Obama administration:

  • The NBA, the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA), and the National Basketball Retired Players Association (NBRPA) announced a five-year commitment with MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership. Through this partnership, the NBA, NBPA and NBRPA will support a public service campaign to recruit 25,000 new mentors for the My Brother's Keeper initiative.
  • AT&T announced an $18 million commitment this year to support mentoring and other education programs as part of the company's Aspire initiative, a $350 million commitment focused on high school success and workforce readiness for students at risk of dropping out school.
  • In addition, a number of organizations including Discovery Communications, The College Board, Citi Foundation, the Emerson Collective, and more are combining to contribute more than $70 million to fund various aspects of the Initiative, including modernizing and improving failing schools, expanding access to Advanced Placement (AP) courses, and creating entry-level and apprenticeship opportunities for at-risk students.

The full text of the White House Press Release announcing these partnerships is available here. More information regarding My Brother's Keeper initiative is available here.

Systemic Renewal

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a component of the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), just released their annual Principal Attrition and Mobility report. According to the study, out of the 114,330 school principals (private and public) who served during the 2011-2012 school year, 78 percent remained at the same school during the following school year; 6 percent moved to a different school; 12 percent left the principalship; and 5 percent were reported as "other." Among principals who left the principalship in 2012-2013, approximately 35 percent left due to retirement. The full report is available on the NCES Web site, here.

Educational Technology

A recent article in the Sterling Journal-Advocate, pulled from the Scripps Howard Foundation Wire, documents several issues related to educational technology, rural schools, and the federally-mandated Common Core requirements. According to the article, a number of schools, particularly ones located in rural districts, lack the broadband access needed to administer some of the tests called for by the Common Core. The article quotes Terry Holliday, the Kentucky commissioner of education, who states: "We still have a number of small rural districts who do not have broadband access." In addition to simple access to broadband Internet, the article also documents a number of schools struggling to meet the Common Core rollout deadline, citing the lack of funding and training required to outfit a school for online standardized testing. The full text of the article is available from Sterling Journal-Advocate at http://www.journal-advocate.com/sterling-local_news/ci_26148806/rural-schools-struggle-roll-out-online-common-core

Career and Technology Education

The National Dropout Prevention Center/Network would like to applaud Heather Conley with the Florida Department of Education for her commitment to Career and Technology Education. Next month, she will be presenting at the National Career Pathways Conference in Florida, stressing the importance of career planning for secondary and postsecondary students and will be reviewing the findings of one of our studies on the South Carolina Personal Pathways to Success initiative. More information about the conference is available http://www.ncpn.info/2014-ncpn-conf.php, and our report on the South Carolina Personal Pathways to Success Program is available here.

Media

The Connect to College program was the focus of an interview on Your Day. This program operates at a technical college and provides a second chance to students who are having difficulty in a traditional high school environment or who have dropped out of high school. The program allows a student to work on both a high school diploma and a postsecondary credential at the same time. Hear the interview at http://yourdayradio.com/archives/YDAudioarch/YD140804/140804c.mp3. Find out more about the program at http://www.tctc.edu/Academics/Explore_Special_Programs/Connect_to_College.xml. We hope to provide more information about this program to you in the near future, so stay tuned to NDPC/N’s news blasts.

Another interesting interview scheduled for Your Day will be Deborah Halliday, Policy Advisor for Community Learning Partnerships in the Montana Office of Public Instruction. Deb has worked with Graduation Matters Montana and other efforts to decrease the dropout rate and increase the graduation rate under the Big Sky. She is sure to present timely information related to Montanan’s efforts in this arena. Tune in September 22, 2014, at noon ET, at http://yourday.clemson.edu/

Feedback

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