For student journalists, the first clear look at school dropout rates
August 17, 2011
Filed under Hot off the Presses
The state Department of Education has handed high school journalists a golden opportunity to do innovative reporting that hits home with students, teachers, administrators and parents alike.
For perhaps the first time, the state has accurate figures on graduation and dropout rates at the school, district, county and statewide levels. That means student journalists can do groundbreaking stories on how well their schools do compared to other local schools and schools elsewhere.
Results are broken down by race, gender, grade and program, giving reporters a chance to look beneath the surface.
Across California, the dropout rate for the 2009-10 year was nearly one in five. Did your school do better or worse? What programs, if any, do school officials have in place to improve the numbers? Why are dropout rates important to educational success?
For an overview story on the figures, check out this San Francisco Chronicle story. The state’s press release is here. And the starting point for looking up statistics on your school, district or county is here.
Need help navigating the numbers? We’re glad to point the way. Just click on the “contact us” link on the Caljournalism home page.