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A Population at Risk: Potential Consequences of Tougher School Standards for Student Dropouts

Edward L. McDill, Gary Natriello and Aaron M. Pallas
American Journal of Education
Vol. 94, No. 2 (Feb., 1986), pp. 135-181
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1084947
Page Count: 47
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
A Population at Risk: Potential Consequences of Tougher School Standards for Student Dropouts
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Abstract

This paper considers the potential impact of the recent recommendations for raising standards in American schools on a population at risk, that is, those students likely to leave school prior to high school graduation. The paper proceeds by (1) presenting a systematic review of the empirical evidence on factors that predict dropping out, (2) synthesizing and explicating the recent recommendations for raising standards in American schools, (3) considering the likely positive and negative effects of higher standards on the population at risk in the absence of any other changes in the structure of schools, (4) identifying the school characteristics that can be altered to minimize the adverse effects of changes in academic standards on potential dropouts, and (5) proposing recommendations to raise academic standards and mitigate the dropout problem simultaneously.

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