School Dropouts: Prevention Considerations, Interventions, and Challenges

Sandra L. Christenson, Martha L. Thurlow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

173 Scopus citations


Preventing school dropout and promoting successful graduation is a national concern that poses a significant challenge for schools and educational communities working with youth at risk for school failure. Although students who are at greatest risk for dropping out of school can be identified, they disengage from school and drop out for a variety of reasons for which there is no one common solution. The most effective intervention programs identify and track youth at risk for school failure, maintain a focus on students' progress toward educational standards across the school years, and are designed to address indicators of student engagement and to impact enrollment status - not just the predictors of dropout. To leave no child behind, educators must address issues related to student mobility, alternate routes to school completion, and alternate time lines for school completion, as well as engage in rigorous evaluation of school-completion programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-39
Number of pages4
JournalCurrent Directions in Psychological Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2004


  • At-risk
  • Dropout
  • Engagement
  • Graduation


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