A new study argues that having an “anchor” and a “web” of support—rather than one person to act as a “hero"—can boost adolescents’ chances of staying in school.
The report from the America’s Promise Alliance draws on data from an online survey of 2,800 teenagers, about 40 percent of whom had disconnected from school at some point. It also analyzes interviews with 120 young people in eight cities.
Among the most powerful predictors of staying in school were the emotional support of parents and of adults in their schools, “instrumental” support from adults in and out of schooltangible help, such as providing babysitting so a student can come to school or introducing the student to a potential employerand “informational” support from friends, such as how to apply to college.
A version of this article appeared in the September 23, 2015 edition of Education Week as Dropout Prevention