NY Stay in School

The National Dropout Prevention Center/Network has identified several effective strategies for dropout prevention.

Systemic Renewal A continuing process of evaluating goals and objectives related to school policies, practices, and organizational structures as they impact a diverse group of learners.

School-Community Collaboration When all groups in a community provide collective support to the school, the strong infrastructure that is created sustains a caring, supportive environment where youth can thrive and achieve.

Safe Learning Environments A comprehensive violence prevention plan that includes conflict resolution and deals with potential violence as well as crisis management.

Family Engagement Research consistently finds that family engagement has a direct, positive effect on children's achievement and is the most accurate predictor of a student's success in school.

Early Childhood Education Birth-to-five interventions demonstrate that providing a child additional enrichment can enhance brain development. The most effective way to reduce the number of children who will ultimately drop out is to provide the best possible classroom instruction from the beginning of their school experience through the primary grades.

Mentoring/Tutoring Mentoring is a one-to-one caring, supportive relationship based on trust between a mentor and a mentee. Tutoring, also a one-to-one activity, focuses on academics and is an effective practice when addressing specific needs such as reading, writing, or math competencies.

Service-Learning Service-learning connects meaningful community service experiences with academic learning. This teaching/learning method promotes personal and social growth, career development, and civic responsibility and can be a powerful vehicle for effective school reform at all grade levels.

Alternative Schooling Alternative schooling provides potential dropouts a variety of options that can lead to graduation, with programs paying special attention to the student's individual social needs and academic requirements for a high school diploma.

After-School Opportunities Many schools provide after-school and summer enhancement programs that eliminate information loss and inspire interest in a variety of areas. Such experiences are especially important for students at risk of school failure because these programs fill the afternoon "gap time" with constructive and engaging activities.

Professional Development Teachers who work with youth at high risk of academic failure need to feel supported and have an avenue through which they can continue to develop skills, techniques, and learn about innovative strategies.

Active Learning Active learning embraces teaching and learning strategies that engage and involve students in the learning process. Students find new and creative ways to solve problems, achieve success, and become life-long learners when educators show them that there are different ways to learn.

Educational Technology Technology offers some of the best opportunities for delivering instruction to engage students in authentic learning, addressing multiple intelligences, and adapting to students' learning styles.

Individualized Instruction Each student has unique interests and past learning experiences. An individualized instructional program for each student allows for flexibility in teaching methods and motivational strategies to consider these individual differences.

Career and Technology Education (CTE) A quality CTE program and a related guidance program are essential for all students. School-to-work programs recognize that youth need specific skills to prepare them to measure up to the larger demands of today's workplace.

The What Works Clearinghouse offers a range of publications that evaluate school and community-based dropout prevention interventions and instructional strategies for middle and/or high schools. Reviewed interventions and strategies are designed to help students complete school and may include services and activities that reduce the impact of those factors which impede progress in school.

Following are specific dropout prevention programs that have been evaluated by the What Works Clearinghouse:

First things First is a reform model intended to transform elementary, middle, and high schools serving significant proportions of economically disadvantaged students.

Twelve Together is a one-year peer support and mentoring program for middle and early high school students that offers weekly after-school discussion groups led by trained volunteer adult facilitators.

Additional dropout prevention programs have presented research to support their effectiveness. However, some did not meet the What Works Clearinghouse research protocol. Therefore, no reports were generated on these programs. For a full listing go to "All Programs" listing on the What Works Clearinghouse website.