After School Dropouts

Decent Essays
Do after-school programs help close the academic gap in African American and Latino middle school students?
Many middle school students who are failing academically will become part of the ever-increasing drop out statistics in our nation. More than 7000 students in the U.S.become dropouts every school day, nearly 1.3 million students per year. It is estimated that dropouts from 2006 alone will cost taxpayers $17 billion in Medicaid and uninsured medical expenses alone over the ir lifetimes (Alliance for Excellence Education, 2010). Sadly, dropouts often have children that become dropouts and a cycle is created which continues (Dropout and TruancyPrevention,2011). Given these statistics and costs to society, it is imperative that we seek solutions to this problem.
The concern for at-risk students and dropout
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Young adolescents offer afterschool providers a special set of challenges which they must overcome in order to attract and retain participants. For example, young adolescents are more autonomous, busier, better able and more likely to articulate specific needs, and less appeased by activities designed for a general audience. While youth in grades six through eight can clearly benefit from participation in afterschool, programs must recognize the needs of these youth and employ innovative strategies to attract and keep them engaged.
The goal was to also gain a better understanding of the perceptions of administrators, teachers, and students in order to determine which aspects of the afterschool program were perceived as engaging and served to promote student achievement. As schools struggle to meet federal achievement standards, after-school programs being viewed as a source of academic support for youth at risk of school failure. Including a disproportionally large number of economically disadvantaged and ethnic minority
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