The research on students who do not graduate from high school has traditionally focused on students who drop out before their expected graduation date. This ignores the experiences of persisting students—those who remain enrolled in high school on or beyond their expected graduation date, but have yet to earn a diploma. In fact, analyses from the Research Alliance have helped show that where data are available, persisting students are estimated to be equal to or greater in number than dropouts.
Research Alliance Affiliate Zitsi Mirakhur and Senior Research Associate Kathryn Hill co-authored a new article in the journal Children & Schools, which argues that persisting students warrant greater attention in research, policy, and practice efforts aimed at promoting high school completion and the postsecondary transition. To this end, this article draws on our work on persisting students in NYC to summarize relevant literature, with attention to how persisting students are defined, their sociodemographic and academic characteristics, and the schools they attend. The article also lays out a research agenda and policy implications, highlighting the importance of better understanding this group and meeting their needs more effectively.
Read the article in Children & Schools.