Posted by: coachk97 | October 21, 2008

Trying to Fix the Drop Out Rate in Michigan

      An article titled “Granholm calls for action on dropout rate” caught my eye today when trying to find more articles on student athletes in the community.  I began reading and decided that I would go in a different direction than normal with this post.  The reason being that I had been hearing about the dropout rate in Michigan, but had never really looked for, or heard of a number associated with that rate. 

      The article says that the National numbers put Michigan’s dropout rate at %25, and that Michigans own numbers have it at %15.  Whoa.  These numbers are hard to fathom for me.  Coming from a small rural town I can only recall one, maybe two dropouts that I new of in my school district.  Now, that doesn’t mean there were not more, but most kids that couldn’t cut it in the High School had an alternative High School down the road where they could continue, and receive a diploma.  The fact that the number for the state of Michigan is somewhere between %15 and %25 is astonishing.  Don’t kids, parents, and teachers realize the situation we are in right now?  Economically speaking Michigan does not have a whole lot to offer a High School dropout in the job department.  Maybe the kids have pressure to drop out and get a job at McDonald’s or some other fast food establishment to help out their family because of the hard economic times. 

      One things is for sure, though, things will turn around eventually, and when they do, where are these kids going to be?  If something to change the school systems is not done (Granholm is trying to change things by getting a conference together) then maybe the economy won’t turn around.  Michigan will have less and less to offer the businesses that set up stakes in our economic market.  If we have less to offer, they have less to offer, and here we sit.

Original Article:

Granholm calls for action on dropout rate

Lori Higgins

http://www.freep.com/article/20081020/NEWS06/81020061/1001/rss01

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Responses

  1. Wow, I was a little astonished myself at the dropout rate in Michigan. I do however remember watching a video in one of my Ed classes last semester that talked about the drop out rate in the U.S. and how it is significantly increased in the past 10 years. Our economy is not at its best right now and I think that we as future educators need to look at ways to help and motivate students to stay in school. This is a tough issure to tackle because there are so many different instances and motives that cause a student to do something so drastic. It would be interesting to do a poll on students who have dropped out and see what the leading cause was for them…

    Jessica Dibble

  2. It truly is hard to fathom that 15-20 percent of students drop out. Its amazing and it just shows how different various parts of Michigan are. Hopefully things will change and we can figure out what has gone wrong with our public education in this country and state. I agree with you that its amazing people dont realize the importance of education. It is truly the only way to a better life. Its easy when your young to be short sighted and not realize how important school is. Also, situations that have such high dropout rates are self-precipitating. It becomes very difficult for students to break out of situations like that. Education is so incredibly valuable and students need to realize that dropping out will hurt their future.

  3. Wow. I’m irate. I definitely just typed a whole comment to you and then accidentally closed out of the box. So I’ll try to remember what it was I had to say…

    First of all, I was astonished to see that the dropout rate in Michigan is so high! One out of every 4 students decides he or she can’t deal with another year or two of high school! Let’s do a little math here…if a student dropped out to work and ended up working 40 hours a week, 52 weeks a year….well…he’d end up with $15,392 if he made minimum wage. Which, if he was a dropout, there’s a good chance minimum wage will be his permanent wage. So that’s an extra $15,000-$30,000 that student could make by dropping out of school in order to work. As opposed to the extra thousands and thousands of dollars he would make every year extra if he simply finished high school. It hardly seems worth it to me.

    The sad thing is that there are students who DO think it’s worth it. In their situations, either they hate school so much or they believe in such a bleak future that dropping out seems like the temporary key to happiness. It’s sad that anyone could have that idea, considering how likely it is that dropping out will lead to a very low standard of life. There’s always exceptions…students who can go on to get their GED, maybe go to college, maybe be successful in a business endeavor with or without college. But the vast majority of these kids are just limiting themselves simply because they don’t complete school.

    I really hope Granholm is effective in whatever she does to try to boost the graduation rate. The current dropout rate is a travesty.

  4. I cannot believe that the drop out rate is so high! I am, like you, from a small farm town. Growing up in north east Indiana I can think of maybe 5 kids who dropped out of my graduating class over the 4 years I was in high school. I can’t even begin to imagine what it means to have such a high percentage of kids drop out of school. I did an observation at a high school in this area that seemed like it would have a lower drop out rate or at least one near what my high school had. I was shocked when I found out that three kids in the single freshman English class I observed were pending drop outs. Three students out of 24 were planning to withdraw when they were less than half way through the year. I really hope that this can be changed; I find it horribly sad that kids are giving up on school so early and so much. As you said the economy here is not in a good place, but things will turn around eventually, and no one said that these kids could not do well in another state or even country. It really is upsetting how quickly people are giving up.

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