A Study of the Drop-outs from the Watertown High School, Grades IX Through XII, During the Five School Years 1946 to 1951
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The problem of encouraging pupils to remain in high school until graduation is of major importance not only to the schools but the community as well. It has been said that the public schools, and especially the secondary schools, have continued to be highly selective institutions. Adjustments within the school have not, in many cases, kept pace with changing school enrollments. Today we find a widely divergent student body necessitating wider ranges of experience to meet the needs of these individuals if we are to keep them in school until graduation. The schools, charged with the responsibility of preparing youth for citizenship and effective living in this democracy, cannot afford to allow these boys and girls to leave school before they have had the essential minimum of training provided in the twelve years of formal education. During the several years of teaching in the Watertown Public Schools, the writer has observed the departure of a number of pupils prior to graduation. As an adviser to many of these pupils, the writer gave serious thought to the problem of keeping these pupils in school. Realizing the need for a more thorough knowledge of this problem, the writer conferred with D.W. Tieszen, the high-school principal, concerning the scope and procedures for the study. It was decided that a study of all accountable pupils withdrawing from school, yet remaining in the community for a- period of at least six months, during the last five years period, September 1946 to.June 1951, would give sufficient data for the study. The study includes all pupils dropping school during the ninth, tenth, eleventh, and twelfth grades as well as those pupils remaining to the end of the school year but failing to register at the beginning of the next school term. The study does not include any pupils dropping prior to registration at the ninth-grade level nor those pupils withdrawing from the parochial school within the city.