“Why We Drop Out”: Understanding and Disrupting Student Pathways to Leaving School

by Deborah L. Feldman, Antony T. Smith and Barbara L. Waxman

Through engaging stories and the use of students’ voices, this book corrects persistent misconceptions about youth who drop out of high school. Based on research conducted with high school dropouts in both urban and rural communities, the authors argue that, contrary to popular belief, most dropouts are not disengaged from school at an early age. Many have positive memories of their education, both social and academic, that educators and policymakers can draw on to create successful prevention and intervention practices. The narratives and insights presented here will help readers to better understand the interplay of school-related and personal factors that lead students to drop out of school.

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