UPDATE: Addressing female dropout rates



This meeting has been moved to East Library, at 5550 N. Union Blvd.

————- ORIGINAL POST, 7:41 A.M., SATURDAY, JUNE 11 —————


What are the factors that cause girls drop out of high school? That's the question that The Women’s Foundation of Colorado has studied since 2008.

They have compiled their findings in a recently released report, which begins: "A national search revealed that while research is performed on why all students (girls and boys) drop out of school, there is little research that puts a gender lens on the issue to pinpoint why girls drop out of school. In addition, much of the literature that does exist is very heavily oriented to urban areas, leaving the stories of rural and resort areas mostly untold."

The factors they found that affect girls more than boys:

Employment — For girls the pull of employment is less to become the family breadwinner
and more to earn spending money or to pay for the expenses of parenting (Bennett and MacIver 2009, 13). This factor also comes into play when parents are working one or more jobs, and girls are asked to take care of the home, younger siblings, and/or older relatives.

Care giving — Girls, more than boys, are likely to drop out of school to focus on family responsibilities. This may include early family formation (teen pregnancy and/or parenting), and taking care of younger siblings or older relatives.

Family disruption - Divorce, illness, death, stepfamily creation, abuse, neglect, or family mobility can affect girls and boys. Girls tend to gravitate to the family to take on a care giving role. Being with the family then takes priority over attending school.

Safety - The girls may not participate in after-school activities or attend school, either because their parents fear for their safety or because they themselves are afraid of being bullied or harassed.

To find out more, you can head over to the Penrose Library on Tuesday, June 14, for a community conversation with WFCO and The Colorado Coalition for Girls from 4 to 6 p.m. The event is free but RSVPs are required.

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