The Wawascene was created by Dr. Mark Stock, former Superintendent of the Wawasee Community School Corporation. Due to its local popularity, Dr. Stock has left the blog site to future Wawasee administrators.

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Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Indy Star on Dropouts

The Indy Star today ran an editorial (again) on the issue of high school dropouts.

Now, I will be the first to agree that there are far too many students that drop out of high school. But read the editorial carefully and notice the use of the words "graduating on time."

In the Star's world, if a student doesn't graduate with their age group they are a "dropout." The official dropout formulas that will be used in the future will allow schools to adjust for those that come around and get it together and earn a diploma.

I wonder what the dropout rates will be when passing the Core 40 Algebra I test becomes the "gatekeeper" course for high school education?

Currently 23.7% of Indiana students can pass that test.

It will depend on what the state does when it sets the "cut score" for passing.


Anonymous said...

We can go over the results again, again and again. Anyway you look at it or twist the results, Wawasee's drop out rate is much too high. We are doing too little about it and our alternative program does not even come close to meeting the needs of the majority of at-risk students. How many drop-outs do you know that not only have the skills to make it through the academic rigors it takes to earn enough credits, but also are excellent self-managers can work independently? This program doesn't appear to be focused on this type of student. So other than shipping students to the Academy (if they even get this far), what are we going to do to prevent and be proactive against further drop-outs?

Anonymous said...

If politicians are going to hold schools accountable for drop outs, and they do, then politicians need to have the courage to legislate them to complete school. Right now drop outs legally wait until they turn 16 and once they do they drop out. Politicians can certainly eliminate the drop out all together by mandating them to at least stay in school until they earn a certificate of completion or until the gradutaion ceremony at which they have reached 18 years of age. That is how you solve the drop out rate. Pretty simple, but politicians lack the political courgae to do it.

The Academy is a whole different issue that needs to be addressed. But, it does have a value if for anything else, it serves as a place to send students who are disruptive in a normal class and school setting. Is it too easy to earn credits there? YES. Does it help safeguard the education of my daughter? YES, because that distruptive and disrespectful child who is disturbing my daughter's educational process can be removed and have a place to do his/her work and my daughter and her classmates can get back to meaningful work with their teacher who is no longer consumed by an unruly student.

Anonymous said...

the academy isn't only for troublemakers. i know alot of sick kids who go there and i went there myself. i was having trouble with geometry and just got my credit there. it was easier than taking the class in school but i actually understand geometry now. i'd like to thank the school for having that option for me. now i don't have to push all my classes to next year because they didn't have geometry the first trimester of school.

Anonymous said...

No one is saying that the Academy doesn't work for SOME of the students. I think what the first blogger is implying is that the Academy doesn't work for most students who might otherwise drop out.

Also, in response to the second comment, how do you know what happens to the "unruly" students who are sent to the Academy? How do you know that they are able to educate such students? Do we know the drop out rate at the Academy?

It seems like we need more information. Currently, it looks like we need more options to meet all of our student needs. The Academy seems to be doing a fine job of meeting some of these, but not all.