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Students Dropping Out of High School Reaches Epidemic Levels

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout' started by Invisible Fan, Nov 22, 2006.

  1. Invisible Fan

    Invisible Fan Contributing Member

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    Flip burgers at 20. Wal-mart greeter at 27.

    Students Dropping Out of High School Reaches Epidemic Levels
    In Some Cities, Half of All Students Quitting School
    By PIERRE THOMAS and JACK DATE

    Nov. 20, 2006 — - In several of the largest school systems across the country -- from Baltimore to Cleveland to Atlanta and Oakland, Calif. -- half of the students are dropping out.

    And the problem is not only in the big cities.

    Watch the second part of Pierre Thomas' report Tuesday on "World News with Charles Gibson."

    A recent study by the Department of Education found that 31 percent of American students were dropping out or failing to graduate in the nation's largest 100 public school districts.

    The implications from dropping out of high school are enormous, including a higher risk of poverty and even an abbreviated life span.

    So why do they drop out? Eli Thomasson, 16, of Georgia, explains why he wanted to drop out of school earlier this year.

    "I was just tired of school, you know. I didn't like it. I had made my mind up that I wasn't going to school anymore," Thomasson said.

    His mother, Donna Thomasson, was frantic.

    "Terrified," she said. "I thought his life was over. I didn't really see how I could force him to go because you can't force them to learn if they don't want to."

    And Eli Thomasson wasn't the only student at his high school to consider walking away without a diploma.

    Berrien High in southern Georgia is part of a national epidemic. More than 40 percent of students there do not graduate.

    Sheila Hendley, Berrien High's graduation coach, has the daunting job of trying to stop this epidemic.

    "I have sat with students and literally begged, 'Please don't do this,'" Hendley said. "I don't want you to have to suffer like I know you will if you don't finish school."

    And in the case of Eli Thomasson, it worked. She stayed on his case and persuaded him to stay in school.

    "He said, 'You know, mom. She probably just saved my life,'" Donna Thomasson said.

    It is estimated that about 2,500 students drop out of U.S. high schools every day.

    "It's like seeing a child in the middle of the lake that can't swim, and you see them bobbing up and down. It's like watching them drown," Hendley said.

    At Berrien High, the faculty is fighting to save students who are at risk of becoming a part of that troubling statistic. "It's a real fight. Every day you talk to someone who needs to be motivated," said Berrien High School Principal Mike Parker.

    And why is a high school diploma so important?

    Consider this: High school dropouts have a life span that is nine years shorter than people who graduate.

    Dropouts are more likely to face poverty, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

    Typically high school dropouts earn $19,000 a year. High school graduates earn $28,000 a year on average.

    If you drop out of high school, your chances of running afoul of the law increase.

    Nationally, 68 percent of state prison inmates are dropouts.

    Sheriff Jerry Brogdon of Berrien County, Ga., sees those consequences every day at the Berrien County Jailhouse.

    He said that "81.2 percent of the inmates we have in here today is high school dropouts."

    Anthony White is a 17-year-old Berrien County Jail inmate.

    He quit high school just two weeks before he spoke to ABC News from the jailhouse. He was arrested for allegedly firing a gun in the air just three days after he quit school.

    "I felt like I was grown," White said. "Nobody could tell me not to make my own decision. That's how I felt at the time."

    But White said, "Now I wish I would've listened."

    James Keefe, 19, is another inmate. He dropped out of high school, too.

    He has been arrested on burglary charges twice.

    "When I was in school, I didn't get in no trouble," Keefe said.

    On Tuesday, Pierre Thomas looks at some programs that school boards are implementing to reverse this drop-out trend. Watch "World News" for the full report.

    Copyright © 2006 ABC News Internet Ventures
     
  2. Ehsan

    Ehsan Member

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    It's become too easy. Even a 15-yr old is practicing completely independent judgement. We know that, up to a certain age and level of experience, the younger you are, the worse you are at making decisions. It's just a matter of information gathered.

    The hope is that through these decisions they gather more experience in different areas and serve themselves well, but the numbers are clearly showing that the trend is mostly negative. It's showing that the decisions are, in most cases, very poor. Now you can either call it stupidity, immaturity or inexperience, either way, there has to be more incentive to stay and more punishment to leave.

    Now, the ability to make more and more bigger decisions is beginning to dip into a lower age group. Soon enough, 4 year olds will be deciding whether or not they want to get an education, and it will be written off as ok because, well, that's freedom.
     
  3. No Worries

    No Worries Contributing Member

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    No child left behind.
     
  4. Xenochimera

    Xenochimera Contributing Member

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    sucks but i blame the parents.
     
  5. A-Train

    A-Train Contributing Member

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    So, how many high school graduates know the definition of "irony"? :D
     
  6. UTweezer

    UTweezer Contributing Member

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    if i can make an assumption....

    high school drop out rates might have a correlation to why customer service in america absolutely sucks nowadays


    (if your not willing to finish something that is pretty much a joke, then what can you actually finish?)
     
  7. thadeus

    thadeus Contributing Member

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    A better joke.
     
  8. MR. MEOWGI

    MR. MEOWGI Contributing Member

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    Maybe it being a joke is part of the problem.
     
  9. krnxsnoopy

    krnxsnoopy Contributing Member

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    Yeah those parents are to blame. They obviously failed as parents.
     
  10. krnxsnoopy

    krnxsnoopy Contributing Member

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    Yeah that's true... Customer service sucks hard nowdays. It's like these people are seriously incompetent at their job or they're actually trying to be unhelpful. Either way, they're freakin useless...
     
  11. thadeus

    thadeus Contributing Member

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    Or they aren't getting paid **** and they just don't care because there's another job that doesn't pay **** just down the block.
     
  12. steddinotayto

    steddinotayto Contributing Member

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    Anyone ever step into a Hollister store, specifically the Galleria one? If not, you're in for a surprise. The average intelligence among its workers must be between a Foreman Grill and a VCR
     
  13. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    yeah they did.

    i loved this part

    WTF?? i guess you can't force your kids to learn anything worthwhile in life.
     
  14. Rocket River

    Rocket River Member

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    Let's fix the problem . . not the Blame

    Rocket River
     
  15. ima_drummer2k

    ima_drummer2k Contributing Member

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    Maybe it being a problem is part of the joke.
     
  16. Surfguy

    Surfguy Contributing Member

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    Drop out and join the Coast Guard! On second thought...

    http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/11/22/diver.deaths.ap/index.html

    Let's see...divers are supposed to dive 20 feet attached to ropes held by crew on board the ship. But, the rope holders let out 190 feet of slack. Darn...if only they paid attention in school instead of dropping out...they might know what a foot of rope is length-wise.
     
  17. JumpMan

    JumpMan Contributing Member
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    Pretty soon you're going to need 24 credits to graduate.

    24 credits=more dropouts

    One guy here at work, maybe around 45 years old, graduated with 18 credits.
     
  18. Rocket River

    Rocket River Member

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    I wonder where these kids are Sleeping

    If you in my house. . .you working or Schooling

    I can't force them to school??? BS . . You can't eat my food
    and sleep in my house. . . and try to Dicate to me what you
    will and will not do

    Rocket River
     
  19. MR. MEOWGI

    MR. MEOWGI Contributing Member

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    What about the parents of the parents, and their parent's parents?
     
  20. crossover

    crossover Contributing Member

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    Don't want to turn this into a heated thread, but really American culture and family values have gotten worse and worse over the generations.

    Anyone remember when you could leave your garage open and not worry about your bike being stolen?

    Where a company brought you in to train you as a life-long loyal employee and didn't fire you using high turnover "resizing and structuring" dynamic management systems?

    Where pursuit of a PhD was actually more a love/respect for knowledge and not just a prestige goal so that you can get into higher paying jobs?

    Or that simply a larger percentage of families you knew weren't so dysfunctional and the kids had some respect for the parents.
     

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