National Center on Secondary Education and Transition
Preventing Dropout and Promoting School Completion
Dropping out of school is a process of disengagement that begins early.
Theoretical conceptualizations have helped us understand the important role of student engagement in school and learning and have drawn attention to key ingredients including student participation, identification, social bonding, and personal investment in learning.
School completion encompasses a broader view than simply preventing dropout (Christenson, Sinclair, Lehr, & Hurley, 2000). Promoting school completion implies:
In the past decade, engagement of alienated youth in school and learning has emerged as one of the most important variables addressed in prevention and intervention efforts.
Christenson (2002) defines engagement as a multi-dimensional construct that involves four types of engagement and associated indicators.
These indicators of engagement are influenced by contextual factors across the home, school, and peers. A focus on facilitators of engagement is a promising approach to guiding the development of effective interventions promoting school completion.
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Citation: Lehr, C. A., Johnson, D.
R., Bremer, C. D., Cosio, A., & Thompson, M. (2004). Essential
tools: Increasing rates of school completion: Moving from policy and research
to practice. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota, Institute
on Community Integration, National Center on Secondary Education and Transition.
This document was published by the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition (NCSET). NCSET is supported through a cooperative agreement #H326J000005 with the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs. Opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of the U.S. Department of Education Programs, and no official endorsement should be inferred. The University of Minnesota, the U.S. Department of Education, and the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition are equal opportunity employers and educators.