|Why Communities In Schools of North Texas?|
Dropping out of school is a process, not an event.
There is no single reason why students drop out of school, nor is dropping out of school a sudden decision. Dropping out is a result of a long process of disengagement that may begin even before a child enters school. It is a cumulative process, brought about by any number of individual, family, community or school risk factors. More than 1/3 of the students who drop out of high school fail to make the transition from 9th to 10th grade. Repeating a grade is the most significant school related risk factor associated with dropping out.
High-stakes accountability mechanisms in the school district place significant negative pressures on the education system without providing enough capacity-building supports such as support for student health, welfare, and safety that could lead to systemic improvement for students overall well being, school climate and academic achievement. Without capacity-building supports for students, poor health, risky and inappropriate behaviors and safety conditions will continue to impede the student's ability to learn and become productive, healthy adults.
Many students miss valuable educational opportunities because they are inattentive in class due to inadequate nutrition; some students cannot concentrate because of pain from dental problems; others because of poor vision and no resources for acquiring vision services and glasses; some students don't have the means to secure appropriate clothing/uniforms; some are preoccupied with family conflicts; other students have difficulty because they experience real or perceived threats to their safety; many students lack the interpersonal and social skills needed to function in a modern cooperative classroom. In addition, the lack of public transportation throughout the county significantly limits access to the resources available to assist students is securing needed services.
Truancy has long been identified as an early warning sign of potential delinquent behavior, social isolation and educational failure. Students who abuse alcohol and other drugs underachieve and cause disruption in the learning environment. Until these and other preventable and treatable health and safety problems are addressed, the ability of students to master even the best-designed curriculum and perform well on high-stakes state assessment tests, which are required for graduation, is compromised. This has a negative effect on student achievement, motivation and feelings of competence and self-esteem.
Drug offense referrals are approximately 10% of the total number of referrals to the Denton County Juvenile Court Services. Drug use is also a significant factor in other criminal behaviors of youth. Substance abuse by youth is an issue in schools and community and is a factor in truancy, morbidity and mortality, violent and gang related crimes, law enforcement personnel risks and costs to the community.
In the midst of the current focus on accountability in the schools, there are less resources and time allocated to prevention and intervention efforts focused on infusing asset-building practices to increase student's personal, social, emotional and physical development necessary to be an active learner and succeed in school.
Communities In Schools of North Texas surrounds students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life. Communities In Schools of North Texas is cost effective, gets parents involved, and is proven to work.