Published: Dec. 11, 2014
“[Back to School: Exploring Promising Practices for Re-engaging Young People in Secondary Education] explores ways to strengthen and expand re-engagement options for young people who need more time or different pathways to finish school.
Despite much progress over the past decade to increase high school graduation rates nationwide, roughly 20 percent of young people, nearly 750,000 a year, are still not walking across the stage to collect their diploma with their peers. An even larger number of young people aged 16-24 – more than two million in total – are not in school and do not yet have a high school diploma. However, even with those sobering numbers, our research tells us that two-thirds of young people who leave school eventually return and complete some sort of degree or equivalency.
The paper is designed as a resource for educators, practitioners, community stakeholders, communications professionals and policymakers interested in supporting out-of-school youth who wish to obtain a high school credential. A high school diploma is by no means a guarantee of success, but failure to complete high school is a devastatingly accurate predictor of lifelong struggle and unrealized human potential. If birth is life’s starting line, then high school graduation is life’s second starting line for success.”