Vol 16, no 7 Header image

Dropout Prevention Update

From the National Dropout Prevention Center/Network
July 2016—Vol. 16, No. 7

Register for

Diploma Planning Institute

July 21–22, 2016

Jonesboro, GA

2016 DPI Georgia

Teams working on school or district dropout prevention plans are encouraged to register for the July 21-22 Diploma Planning Institute to be held in Jonesboro, GA. This workshop is open to all. Staff from NDPC/N will lead your team through a framework for dropout prevention and through the development of a locally specific action plan that can begin to be implemented immediately upon return from the workshop. Click here http://www.cvent.com/events/diploma-planning-institute/event-summary-119d571d7e1b460dad4fff494468bdd4.aspx to register and for more information.

Register for

2016 National Dropout Prevention Network Conference

October 2–5, 2016

Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center

Detroit, MI

2016 National Dropout Prevention Network Conference

Register now for the 2016 Network conference. The theme of this conference is youth engagement! Visit the 2016 National Dropout Prevention Network Conference page to register and for more details. Keynoters include Eric Thomas, Russell Quaglia, and Barrington Irving. You can also sign up for a two-day pre-conference Teacher Hackathon where you’ll join Ford Motor Company developers, UX/web/graphics designers, product managers to form teams to build creative solutions to reduce dropout rates. During the conference, there will be site visits, a Motown opening reception at the Mosaic Youth Theatre, a Tech Ed breakfast, and more than 75 breakout sessions in total, including numerous youth-led sessions. Links to sponsorship information and hotel information can also be found on the conference page.

Save the Dates for

2017 Save the Date

2017 At-Risk Youth National FORUM!

February 19–22, 2017

Embassy Suites at Kingston Plantation

Myrtle Beach, SC

2017 National Forum on Dropout Prevention For Native And Tribal Communities

April 9–12, 2017

We-Ko-Pa Resort & Conference Center

Scottsdale, AZ

National Dropout Prevention Center/Network’s 30th Anniversary Celebration

Mark your calendar for the National Dropout Prevention Center/Network’s 30th Anniversary Celebration on Monday, October 24, 2016, to be held at the NDPC/N home office located at 209 Martin Street, Clemson, SC! If you are located nearby, plan to drop in any time between 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM. The program will begin at 3:00 PM. If you can’t attend, the program will be live streamed beginning at 2:24 PM. More details and an invitation to follow later!

What is a Diploma Planning Institute?


Over the past two years, NDPC/N has conducted more than a half-dozen Diploma Planning Institutes (DPI) in districts and states across the nation to help teams from schools/districts work on written dropout prevention plans. For more information on this service, visit NDPC/N's home page at www.dropoutprevention.org; view a short video filmed during a summer 2015 DPI in Maine; and contact NDPC/N at 864-656-2599 or ndpc@clemson.edu for more details or to arrange a DPI for your state or region. An event open to all is planned for July 21-22, 2016, in Georgia. Link here or see the promotion above for more information on that DPI event.

What is the National Dropout Prevention Specialist Certification Program?

Specialist Certifiation Program

Join a growing army of educators and practitioners identified as working with and/or on behalf of students at risk of dropping out of school. The National Dropout Prevention Specialist (NDPS) certification program is founded on NDPC/N’s research-based effective strategies, known youth risk factors, professional learning participation, and field implementation of acquired knowledge. This certification verifies and strengthens dropout prevention experience and expertise and facilitates networking with others equally dedicated to dropout prevention. Visit http://dropoutprevention.org/services-certifications/national-dropout-prevention-specialist-certification-program/ for more information or contact us at ndpc@clemson.edu with any questions or to register for the certification program. NDPC/N has begun posting our new certification program completers on our Web site. Click here to see and read about the first group of certification recipients, a celebrated group indeed!

Solutions to the Dropout Crisis

"The 21C Workplace"

July 12, 2016

3:30–4:30 PM ET

July Solutions

Meeting 21C workplace needs for both employers and employees requires not only an awareness of the role our nation’s workforce plays in the current global economy, but also planning and implementation of initiatives designed to ensure that future workplace needs can be met. Young people can also be more engaged in school when they recognize that school work is directly related to their unique goals and outcomes post-graduation.

  • Franklin Schargel, of Schargel Consulting Group, and co-host Micheal Lillywhite, of Skillbott Inc., discuss what the 21C classroom looks like, what education’s role is in building a 21C economy, and why our 21C workplace must be globally competitive.
  • George J. Petersen, Founding Dean of Clemson University’s College of Education, comments on teacher and school leadership preparation and on NDPC/N’s work in continuing to reduce the dropout rate nationwide.
  • Stewart Rodeheaver, of Vizitech USA, discusses the need to engage students while also developing their workplace skills. Virtual reality applications, from investigating the inside of the human heart to assembling a combustion engine, allow students to become both more skilled and more engaged in learning.

Link here on the day of the broadcast to join us for this program. Viewing this webcast is free and no registration is required. Tune in the second Tuesday of each month at 3:30 PM ET for new Solutions to the Dropout Crisis.

Youth Engagement

National Dropout Prevention Center/Network Research Fellows are increasing their focus on the topic of youth engagement (in school and community) and how youth engagement relates to dropout prevention and graduation rate improvement. Along those lines, the Dropout Prevention Update eNewsletter plans to bring at least one article related to that topic to your attention each month.

Recently, Education Secretary John King Jr. met with some young people who had experienced homelessness during their K-12 careers, and who beat the odds and are now in college. He wanted to hear what their schools had done well and not so well in terms of helping them overcome the obstacles they faced. He wanted to tap into the voices of young people to help solve some very real problems they face each day. Read about King’s conversations with these youth in this Washington Post article, and see if you might get some insight into things you might do to better serve children who are in unstable housing or who are homeless

Top Stories

Growing Graduation Rates

A new report, High School Graduation Rates through Two Decades of District Change: The Influence of Policies, Data Records, and Demographic Shifts, looks at graduation rate improvements in Chicago Public Schools and addresses the extent to which various factors could account for the changes in graduation rates, including changes in student performance and student demographics, increasing numbers of charter and selective enrollment high schools that serve Chicago students, and changes in school practices around improving attendance and course performance. Source of link: Russell Rumberger’s EdResearch/California Dropout Research Project blast, UC Santa Barbara.

Building a Grad Nation

The 2016 Building a Grad Nation Report is out from Civic Enterprises and the Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University. Released in partnership with America’s Promise Alliance and the Alliance for Excellent Education, the report examines progress and challenges faced in reaching a national on-time graduation rate of 90% by the Class of 2020. While states face various challenges and are beginning with different on-time graduation rates, a map is presented showing the authors’ calculations of 2014 on-pace/off-pace to 90% progress. The note below the map indicates that there is limited data so far.

Grad Nation Report Map

Policy Updates

ESSA Update

The Departments of Education and Health and Human Services have released guidance for the understanding and implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Read about the guidance and other updates to the ESSA here: http://blog.ed.gov/. Read the full guidance document here.

Effective Strategies

Systemic Renewal

A couple of resources on Early Warning Systems (EWS): IES’s Web page on EWS, and A Practitioner's Guide to Implementing Early Warning Systems, from REL Northwest, January 2015. The description to the guide states that to reduce the number of students dropping out, many schools and districts are turning to Early Warning Systems that signal whether a student is at risk of not graduating from high school. Little information exists about the actual implementation strategies being used across the country. This report summarizes the experiences and recommendations of EWS users throughout the United States.

Safe Learning Environments/School Climate

The White House has released a Newcomer Tool Kit designed to help schools support immigrants and refugees, and their families, providing information, resources, and examples of effective practices that educators can use to support newcomers in schools and communities.

Career and Technology Education (CTE)

Read a June 2016 report from REL Appalachia describing some of the challenges, successes, and methods from six nonurban Kentucky districts offering students access to dual credits. Download the report here: http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/edlabs/regions/appalachia/pdf/REL_2016136.pdf

Active Learning

Teacher Mary Wade breaks down five elements of 21st-century classrooms that will help small classrooms make big progress. Read the full blog post here: http://www.edutopia.org/blog/visualizing-21st-century-classroom-design-mary-wade

For further insight into bringing the classroom into the 21st century, check out Rachel Thomas and Steven Lamb in their TEDx talk, "Connections within a Virtual Void," at http://tedxtalks.ted.com/video/Connections-within-a-Virtual-Vo;search%3ASteven%20Lamb

Call for Manuscripts

The National Dropout Prevention Center/Network publishes two journals: The Journal of At-Risk Issues and ENGAGE: The International Journal of Research and Practice on Student Engagement. We are soliciting manuscripts to consider for publication. Link to our “Journals” Web page for more information on each journal’s focus and audience as well as “Call for Manuscripts” guidelines for each journal. Contact ndpc@clemson.edu with any general questions regarding these journals and submission guidelines.

Funding Sources

Promoting Student Resilience

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Safe and Healthy Students has opened applications for the Promoting Student Resilience program which awards grants to local educational agencies (LEAs) or consortia of LEAs to build capacity to address comprehensive behavioral and mental health needs of students in communities with significant civil unrest. Find out more about this program at http://www2.ed.gov/programs/student-resilience/index.html. Link to a June 30 webinar presentation and get information on an upcoming July 14 conference call at http://www2.ed.gov/programs/student-resilience/applicant.html. Deadline: July 25, 2016

School Improvement Grants

The Department of Education awarded more than $113 million in School Improvement Grants (SIG) to 16 states to continue efforts to turn around persistently lowest-achieving schools. Awards to other states will be made on a rolling basis over the coming months.

Tools and Resources

From the U.S. Department of Education’s ED Review: The Department’s Institute of Education Sciences (IES) has launched a new tool to make it easier and more cost-effective for states and districts to evaluate the impact of their programs. RCT-YES is a free, user-friendly software that supports analysis and reporting of results from randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and other types of evaluation designs. The tool can support a growing culture of research use in education.

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