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Dropout Prevention Framework

Educational attainment is pivotal in preparing for a prosperous future. The Alliance for Excellent Education affirms, the “best economic package” is a high school credential. Increases in lifetime earnings and annual state and local tax revenue are estimated at $230,000 per high school graduate. This is encouraging news for Colorado. State trends show that fewer Colorado students are dropping out and more are completing high school each year. 

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Steps to Accelerate Progress

Not all students are fully benefiting from the state’s educational gains. Historically underserved students, specifically those from economically challenged communities, racial minority groups and students with disabilities, continue to fall short of their academic potential and are missing the skill sets to compete with their peers. There is opportunity to accelerate improvement in education outcomes by applying strategies that show promising results in serving Colorado’s most vulnerable students.  This work is captured in the state’s dropout prevention framework.


Colorado Dropout Prevention Framework

The dropout prevention framework outlines how to accelerate progress at the school and district level. It provides a foundation for rigorous and relevant coursework, teacher preparedness and instruction, and development of systems to ensure ALL students reach their full potential.

This multi-faceted framework includes evidence-based systems, essential elements and strategies focused on Identification, Interventions, and Institutional change.

Essential Elements

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  • Identification: Identifying students who are at risk of dropping out of school through the use of data analysis, early warning systems, and the review of policies and practices as a means of preventing student disengagement before it starts.
  • Intervention and support: Successful efforts include transition planning and support, whole school strategies and tiered interventions for students identified as being off-track to graduate or at risk for dropping out. Intervention and supports are data-informed and contextualized to meet student needs.
  • Institutional change: System-wide changes that can be utilized to create an ecosystem for student success, including improving school climate, evaluating policies and practices, and understanding the multiple pathways to graduation that can be used to re-engage students and increase graduation rates.

Methods and Strategies

The pillars of the dropout prevention framework are supported by eleven methods and strategies that are crucial to understanding the issues involved in dropout prevention and student re-engagement.