A growing problem in the United States continues to plague our schools. Students are dropping out of school at an alarming rate. Every year 1.2 million kids drop out of school. That is about a student every 26 seconds. It seems no one has the answers to the growing problem later counted to US social issues. About 25% of the nation’s freshmen do not make it to their senior year.
A grim picture has been painted for kids all over this country. If you plan on attending college, plan on going into debt. This seems to be a major factor among high schoolers. The United States is now ranked 22 out of 27 developed countries in the world for graduating its students. This is a far cry from my days in school. We would go to school but experience far less debt. The students are put into a money trap that is hard for some to recover from. Imagine an inner-city child coming from a history of poverty. It will be twice as hard for those in poverty which is again a major contributor in social issues, to get out of the situation.
African Americans are next to last when it comes to graduating opening the door for racism. Seventy-nine percent of African Americans graduate from high school compared to Eighty-nine percent of Whites, Ninety-two percent of Asians, Eighty-one percent of Latinos and Seventy-four percent of Pacific Islanders.
There are several factors that discourage students from finishing high school. For African Americans it starts with home life. That can be a battle in itself for single family homes. Somewhere, someone convinced African Americans that single parent homes were satisfactory but history shows adverse results. I admire the single parents that fight that battle, but I also understand that a child needs both the parents.
Gangs in school are prevalent all across the United States. This has to factor into the dropout rate of many students. Gangs recruiting usually begins in middle school. By the time kids reach high school, the downward spiral has already taken effect. Like the college indebt program, there is no recovery. In 2017, the average high school “event” dropout rate is 4.7% in contrast with 3.5% in 2007. Also, average high school “status” drop rate was 5.4% in 2017. 54% of students who dropout of high school left in 10th or 11th grade. (Reference from educationdata.org/high-school-dropout-rate) The beginning of social issue education related with its growth on next level going by the stats is here.
Mental illnesses in schools are very noticeable by the bullying and school shootings. Who wants to go to school and be bullied every day. What are social issues of today linked with children, each day with the stress of getting bullied has a negative impact on kids’ mental health. Every child needs care and growth mentally, physically along with social space in a place like school. A frightened child gets restricted barriers in these developments when being harassed. School becomes another name for torture and harassment for such kids. A bullying incident can be no difference that a soldier getting PTSD. Only difference is soldiers may receive help. Students are not afforded that help. On average there are 2 to 4 counsellors to manage 1500 students at one high school. It is like the school system is designed to fail the kids.
With such a grim outlook on the benefit of high education, it is easy to understand why the numbers continue to rise. Finding answers are not easy, especially when there is so much red tape to implement programs and solutions.
In 2008, I started a school mentoring program. The program was a music-based program that engaged students of all ages. I encountered so much push back from the school district, principals and some teachers. They couldn’t understand why this program was so engaging to the kids. It was simple, we spoke their language. We were making a huge difference in the schools in Ohio. Also, a noticeable factor is 75% which is actually a significant ratio of high school dropouts never joined in an alternative program or school. (Reference from educationdata.org/high-school-dropout-rate) Challenge is schooling being the primary and most essential element in a child’s growth. If it is missing, that can lead to a shady future of society along with children also in incorporating causes of social issues globally.
The more music in schools the better place it will become. Music soothes the soul. Music helps kids with Autism. Music helps kids with stress and ease out the anxiety level they absorb from the environment. Music acts like a healing therapy for kids with mental and developmental issues.