Change the path: Preventing school dropouts
By Naomi Hodge
For generations now, people have lost interest in bettering their lives through education. It has been an issue faced by teens and has risen higher and higher throughout the years. Dropping out of school should never be an option if all school does is bring good things to a person and helps in gaining more knowledge of what is out in the world. We should all be trying to figure out why students feel the need to drop out and how do we get them to stay.
In 2018, the dropout rate for African Americans in the United States was at 16.2%, whereas the dropout rate for 2017 in Baltimore, Maryland was at 17%. One reason why kids turn to dropping out is because of family problems, whether it’s money or something worse. It could also just be that they simply lost interest in the educational system thinking that it wouldn’t be able to help them.
I want to educate people on why students feel the need to drop out of school before fully accessing all the knowledge they can in high school. But not only to tell them why kids drop out but also to help others find ways to get the students to want to stay and gain this important experience/knowledge they will need in their futures. I don’t want people to keep pushing away this problem but instead learn and change. Kids need to know that there are people looking out for them. Encourage students to join various after-school extracurricular activities. Some examples of extracurricular activities kids could join include school sports teams, club sports, community volunteering, and so much more. Not only school extracurricular activities but also ones provided by the community.
Schools should have a job fair for students that need work to help support
their families where they get introduced to different local jobs and learn how to write a resume. All kids should want to get an education, they should never lose interest in gaining knowledge.
Parents/guardians should check in with their child’s teachers to make sure they are engaged, but also check in with your child to make sure the teacher is giving proper information. Parents/guardians should also check on a school’s environment to make sure their child is well taken care of.
We rely on future generations to help the world become a better, safer place but that can’t happen without the knowledge of how to do so. No one seems to be discussing this very important topic and that need to change. We need to educate people on this issue before it is too late to fix. Pick the path that is better for you and for the people around you.
Naomi Hodge is a student at McDaniel College and a graduate of Baltimore City Public Schools.