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High School Dropout


A high school dropout refers to anyone who leaves high school and abandons his or her studies before graduation and, hence, fails to earn any credentials from high school. A report reveals that children who fail to read proficiently by fourth grade are much more likely to drop out of school. Typically, the U.S. Department of Education uses the age range of between sixteen and twenty four years to measure high school dropout rate. In the United States, the rate at which high school students drop out of school has assumed alarming proportions in recent times and the dangers which this alarming phenomenon portends for the American society cannot be ignored.

Sombre High School Dropout Statistics

The undesirable phenomenon of high school students dropping out of school is a universal one. For instance, in the sub-Saharan Africa, about 42% of secondary school students drop out of school yearly. About 20% of high school students in Britain drop out of school annually and the estimates for the U.S., put the figure at about 1.3 million high school students who drop out of school before they graduate. The frightening implication of this statistics is that 25% of American high school students drop out of school yearly.

Reasons Why High School Students Drop Out of School

Ordinarily, one would assume that the major reason why students may drop out of school is the inability to cope with their academic studies or poor grades. However, a survey carried out by Civic Enterprises for the Bill Gates Foundation showed that only slightly more than a third of such drop outs fall within this category. By contrast, about 47% of the respondents said that they dropped out of school because classes were boring. About 43% said that they had to drop out because they had missed too many classes and couldn’t catch up while 42% of those surveyed admitted that they had spent too much time with those who weren’t interested in schooling and about 38% said that they later realized that too much freedom had been allowed them by their parents and they had too few principles to live by.

Negative Implications of Dropping Out of School

Though dropping out of school cuts across all classes and ethnic groups, children of the poor and disadvantaged members of the society are especially prone to this ugly trend. It has been established that high school drop outs are more likely to face unemployment problems and a life time of poverty than graduates of high school.

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