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Spring 2007 Vol. 14 No. 3 Focus on Dropping Out, Coming Back

Pathways back to school don't yet match need

Photo: Harvey Finkle
By by Dale Mezzacappa

Sophia Griggs wants to go back to school.

The 18-year-old left Benjamin Franklin High three years ago, sent off for bad behavior to one of the District’s disciplinary schools. She now says that she isn’t the same kid she was then and deserves another chance.

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On the front lines of Philadelphia's dropout crisis

By by Eric K. Grimes and Benjamin Herold

"I couldn't have dropped out without hearing it from my grandparents, my neighbors - even the older thugs in the neighborhood," says Jay Henry, director of the Office of Truancy and Delinquency Prevention for Philadelphia's Department of Human Services. "The same message would have been reinforced 150 times a month: 'What do you think you're doing?'"

"Now, parents don't have those intimate relationships to support them," Henry observes.

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How many students graduate? Why do students leave school?

By by Dale Mezzacappa

Unfulfilled Promise, the study by researchers Ruth Curran Neild and Robert Balfanz of dropout trends for Philadelphia students in public schools between 2000 and 2005, revealed the magnitude of the crisis in Philadelphia and delineated the major reasons why students drop out.

The study looked at how many Philadelphia students dropped out during a single school year, 2003-2004.

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