CPS Give Kids a Voice in Cutting Dropout Rate

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Chicago Sun-Times

More than 50 youth from 15 Chicago high schools have spent the past year-and-a-half trying to figure out how to boost the public school system’s 55 percent high school graduation rate. The students – members of Voices of Youth in Chicago Education (VOYCE) – visited 12 high-performing high schools across the country and determined that youth engagement, rigor and relevance were part of the answer to lowering the dropout rate. The school system chief said he will implement at least two reforms suggested by the students at selected schools: At-risk incoming freshmen will attend three retreats to build bonds with classmates and teachers and to work on four-year graduation plans, and student advisers will give input on everything from curriculum to teaching methodologies. Nov. 13, http://www.suntimes.com.