This is another of those posts that is not intended to be political in nature, but probably brushes up against that in some sense. Many years ago when I was working on my master’s degree, I took a course in the sociology of education as part of the Interdisciplinary program I was in (Organizational Development). Although I do not profess to be a teacher, I am a trainer at multiple levels and I have been involved in the training of literally hundreds of soldiers during my career. I have always had an interest in education and I recently joined a committee to work with local schools and businesses to see how we as a community can help high school and even middle school students prepare for the workplace.
There have also been recent developments in improving local schools that are showing measurable benefits. Those are all good things, but sadly, there are still families who either do not or will not take an interest in their child/children’s education as is seen in delinquiency and drop out rates. While I am a big proponent of trade education as well as college education, completion of high school is an important building block no matter which route is taken after that. When a student cannot understand this point for whatever that reason may be, he or she is already facing a life with restricted choices. While yes, a student might have a rebellious nature or be intensley authority-adverse, in most cases there is family influence at work. Overcoming this influence to try and help a student understand the importance of a high school education is one of the reasons that I urge mentor programs. It can make a diffference in whether a student stays in school or drops out.
There is rarely a one-size-fits-all solution and knowing what resources are available within your community to assist “at-risk” youth is important. So if you are looking for volunteer opportunities, this is something to consider.