When the economy and families fail to provide, schools have to step in

While dropout prevention programs are largely associated with high schools, those teenage decisions are often rooted in missed benchmarks and habits formed at a younger age. Examples: chronic tardiness, absenteeism, and not meeting widely accepted academic benchmarks (like reading proficiency by third grade) that are understood to be correlated with long-term success.

Basham, who wanted Communities In Schools at Taylor Elementary after seeing its success firsthand at a different local school she worked at, views fourth grade as a turning point: “That’s when it seems like they decide either to commit and be all-in or not.”

This community-school model advocated for by Communities In Schools suggests that to receive that buy-in from students and their parents, you must go beyond tutoring or direct academic support.

 

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