It is no secret that where education is concerned, Nevada often finds itself well below average. According to a 2015 report by the Nevada State Legislature division of research, Nevada is experiencing a graduation rate of 68%. Upon closer inspection of this number you will find that Blacks, Hispanics, and American Indians have an even lower rate of graduation success, falling below 60%.
There is a plethora of research regarding education of the underserved; several arguments point towards the separation of other “normal” students and a focus solely on career education ultimately putting the underserved population at a disadvantage. However, when offered correctly, both individualized attention and a proper relating of education to effectiveness in the workplace is a motivator of educational success with this population. In summarizing his 1985 study on the Demographics of Education, Harold Hodgkinson notes that successful programs “combine intensive, individualized training in the basic skills with work-related projects” and finds that “when the relation between education and work becomes clear, most of these potential drop-outs can be motivated to stay in school and perform at a higher level”.
Further analysis brings to attention that negative effects alienation, negative reinforcement, and lack of individualized education. One very important aspect of the problem is that it is clear that populations with these drop out prone characteristics, listed below, are growing:
- Living in high-growth states
- Living in unstable school districts
- Being a member of a low-income family
- Having low academic skills (though not necessarily low intelligence)
- Having parents who are not high school graduates
- Speaking English as a second language
- Being single-parent children
- Having negative self-perceptions; being bored or alienated; having low self-esteem Pursuing alternatives: males tend to seek paid work as an alternative; females may leave to have children or get married
As this is a situation that is preventable, but will in all likelihood worsen, The Embracing Project & Center 4 Peace have taken action. We are proud to announce a new partnership with Lincoln County School District. This partnership with allow the youth that we serve an opportunity to attend school at their own pace with an intensive and individualized focus. The program, in combination with other offerings of the Center 4 Peace, will benefit those students that have been left behind, outcast, and forgotten by complimenting individualized education plans with counseling, vocational skills, hands-on programming, material assistance, and more in a safe, supportive, and nonjudgmental environment for an overall constructive experience.
Durian, G. and Butler, J.A. “Effective Schooling Practices and At-Risk Youth: What the Research Shows” School Improvement Research Series, 1987. Retrieved from http://educationnorthwest.org/sites/default/files/EffectiveSchoolingPractices.pdf
Nevada Department of Legislation. “Student Performance Measures—Attendance, Credit Attainment, Graduation Rates, and Dropout Rates” 2015 Nevada Education Data Book, 2015. Retrieved from https://www.leg.state.nv.us/Division/Research/Publications/EdDataBook/2015/Ch04.pdf