Is Dropping Out of High School Acceptable?

United States
August 10, 2009 2:40pm CST
Kind of feeding off from another discussion about teenagers, I often think of this: I surely hope my children don't ever want to drop out of high school. I want them to graduate from HIGH SCHOOL-not drop out or get kicked out and end up at a continuation school or only getting their GED. I beleive that high school teaches responsibilty and dedication, as well as learning to deal with peer issues, understanding punctuality, etc. I am not a fan of continuation school because the state mandates far less work and structure from its students, not to mention many times "problem students" attend because they could not make it work in the regular high school setting. I think allowing your child to drop out of school shows that it is not important to strive to do your best, or it is ok to mess up because there is always something else to fall back on. Am I old-school for the way I think? I think maybe I am uneducated nowadays with how schools work, and maybe it is a lot harder for a teen to truly succeed in high school, resulting in the reasons more kids either do drop out all together, or go the continuation or GED route. What do you think? Have you had your teens drop out of school? Did you allow it or were they kicked out of regular school? What the reasons they either dropped completely or they decided continuation school was better?
2 people like this
25 responses
@sunshine4 (8703)
• United States
11 Aug 09
Dropping out of school is not an option for my children and they know it. My oldest graduated and married a girl who dropped out in Feb of her senior year. Now she has a hard time finding a job of any kind except for McDonalds. My son keeps telling her to go and get her GED at least so she can then go to college. I have a son who will be graduating this year. He has no interest to drop out of school. He is looking forward to going and visiting colleges this year. My other 2 children know it is important to get a proper education. They will both finish high school and then go to college.
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Aug 09
I seriously hope my kids choose to go to college, but I guess that seems really far off, and although it is highly recommended to go to college, I am still aiming towards instilling reasons why high school is important. What I really don't get is why parents allow their kids to drop and NOR do they make them go out and work full time if they choose to drop. It seems like parents sometimes are in support of their children becoming losers.
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Aug 09
It can definitely happen-there are jobs that people can lucky with-and in fact, get great pay and pay benefits, sometimes even better than those who in fact do have a college degree! What I don't understand are parents who allow their children to drop out of school , and then a llot them to drop from an alternative program, and STILL the kids chooses to do nothing with themselves. I see no great satisfaction in living off of someone else. But I think people today are genuinely lazy and they just don't care if they have nothing to show for themselves. Even if that means just to have their own place and maybe a car. They are free loading-all the way to transportation and food!
@sunshine4 (8703)
• United States
11 Aug 09
Parents are making life unrealistic for their kids when they don't make them go and get a job. All of my kids had jobs when they decided they wanted a cell phone. They wanted the phone, so they paid the bill. When my oldest graduated, he decided not to attend college. He was working at the local pizza parlor at the time. I told him either enroll in college or go out and get a full time job with benefits. He surprised all of us and got a great job!!
• United States
10 Aug 09
It's a lot HARDER? That's a new one to me. Seems a lot easier. I've known several brilliant kids who gave up on school because it was too easy for them. I agree with you completely on why school is important. I think the most important things a good school teaches is how to think critically and how to be responsible. Any school should at least teach the latter. I see very few reasons to drop out of school, and both are extremes. First- High school has no benefit and could be becoming detrimental. Kids in urban areas with poor education, and a poor and bankrupt school system often don't benefit from finishing high school as much as they benefit from starting a career in a trade and working up, or something similar. Second- The student is so far beyond the high school level it is rediculous to hold them there. Though in this case they would presumably want to go on to college, and would aim for graduating early rather than just dropping out. I've known a few people who dropped out of school. None of them end up in cozy, middle class jobs. Not to say it isn't possible, and not to say that there's anything wrong with the other jobs. But kids should be aware of what they are REALLY doing when they consider quitting school.
1 person likes this
@zoey7879 (3100)
• United States
10 Aug 09
Something I'd like to add in response to princess's response to your post Improb, is that unfortunately there are many many parents and care givers who simply do not care about their child's education; and I hope no one bashes on me too hard because this is going to sound cliche, but this is very true in many lower income areas.
1 person likes this
• United States
10 Aug 09
It is cliche, but it is in fact true. There are hard working families that just don't make much, and there are also people who don't work at all or don't care to move up in the working world, and money only stretches so far. It is statisitics, whether it seems discriminatory or not.
1 person likes this
@coolcat123 (4387)
• India
14 Aug 09
I suppose the high school teachers must be more careful and responsible like the school ones. They leave all thing upto the students and care not much about the students ....in other words they are irresponsible and careless. If strict rules are bounded on the students and strictness is followed and severe punishment without failing is given then no one will even think of doing any wrong things in school or college.
1 person likes this
• United States
14 Aug 09
Yes, a big part of the students success is based on the teachers. I have seen the credentials get tougher for teachers without much of an incentive to teach (as I learned in c a college prep course for teaching while attending college.) Many teachers are on a rigorous curriculum and teaching is becoming harder with teh demands of society, culture, and the variation of som many different family types. A lot of kids are ending up in alternative schools or dropping out because the parents just don't want to keep up with the schools anymore too. Or they really don't care to push their kids to stay in school.
1 person likes this
@ElicBxn (62692)
• United States
10 Aug 09
IF I had kids, I'd KILL them if they dropped out.
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Aug 09
I agree with that. I won't allow it, and although I am not married to any of my kids dad (I have 3), he wouldn't allow them to drop either. I think if a teen is willing to call it quits in school, he or she is not really going to learn what it means to have to complete something that should be a high priority. And statistically speaking, those who drop out really don't do much else with themselves after the fact. Not always true, but generally speaking.
2 people like this
@ElicBxn (62692)
• United States
11 Aug 09
well, I did know a guy, a few years older than I am, who took the GED in 11th grade and went on to some place like MIT But he was exceptional and did the GED and "dropped out" to go to college on a scholarship.
• Philippines
13 Aug 09
my son finished high school ,thank god , even received awards. my daughter also is interested in school . studying is a routine they 've accepted because teaching is what i do for a living.i have teenage friends ( bec some time i was active in youth ministry )they are drop outs in the middle of the year and enroll again next year in the same level( they have 4 chances). i think kids drop out bec. they lack decisiveness and determination in what they do. hostile parents also make them choose to do wrong things all the more.i also observed that they seek peer approval even if these peers are bad influence to them. they don't think that they have a fall back , what matters is now , they belong and they can get even w/ their parents as they self-destruct.as their older friend , i still give them an encouraging smile, praise them when i see them in school uniform (for how long this year only them knows)and give them help whenever they ask w/in my means ,of course. sometimes they are demanding bec. they know i've to help as a caring adult.sometimes ,i lost track if they were able to finish that year. i also pray for them to have a change of heart.
1 person likes this
• United States
13 Aug 09
Being a teacher would definitely be an active encouragement for children and teens to want to complete school. I just really hope my children realize the importance of staying in school and find it worthy of tehir time and do not fall off track. Last night I was talking to my oldest son who is almost 10, and he said he wants to go to college to be a mechanic and have a shop with 2 of his friends. I was proud of him for considering his future all ready! He doesn't like school too much, but we talked the importance of education last night, and I know he at least heard me out with an open mind.
1 person likes this
@jimntam (93)
• United States
12 Aug 09
You put forth a lot of good questions and points. First of all I can understand you having that fear of your children dropping out of school when they are older. I can say the chance of that becomes much less when the parent gets involved. I believe that it's been proven that a parent who cares about a child's education and is involved with the school even in the littliest ways like helping where they can with homework, going to open-houses, games, or concerts are less likely to have children that drop out. If your way of thinking is "old school" well then maybe old school isn't always wrong. I agree that it teaches what you mentioned. Unfortunately, I've seen it fall short on teaching the actual curriculum at times. I won't go into detail about that, because that would be a whole other discussion board and I would end up rambling on and on. LOL As far as an alternative school. Although it's not my first choice it's better than completely dropping out. For some kids it might be better that the requirements are lower because they just might not be able to handle regular high school. We have about four different education situations we're dealing with here. As far as dropping out or being kicked out of school, we took in a 17 year old boy who was kicked out of high-school. He's planning on getting his GED and attending a trade school to become a mechanic. Not being his parents or legal guardians our hands are tied and we can only hope he follows through with his plans. Our step-sons are home schooled by their mother. Although I am not against home schooling if done properly, I have my doubts about the quality of their education in general. My son has a severe learning disability. He's not enrolled in an alternative school, but is getting a very different high school education than the normal one because of it. Finally, my daughter is in regular highschool and plans on attending college after she graduates.
• United States
12 Aug 09
I understand that are exceptions to every rule, and some children just cannot thrive in a regular school setting, as you have explained all the variations your family does. I have a real problem with kids who merely drop out "just because" it is isn't their thing and the parents are in support of it! My children will not drop out, and if they absolutely cannot make it in a regular public high scholl setting, then there will have to be severe reasons why they cannot attend-and succeed-like their peers will. I am somewhat against alternative schools-I have had many friends who have attended and I have seen som of the students who go. They are obviously lacking structure often times and they have often times been kicked out of school for breaking the rules. They often ridcule the schools they were kicked out of-saying the rules were ridiculous and the teachers were not good at their job. What? Why do some students have such a hard time with following the rules and authority, while others succeed just fine in the same curriculum and setting?
1 person likes this
• United States
10 Aug 09
When I was growing up, I was one of those kids that thought about dropping out well before I even got old enough to actually be able to drop out. I just hated school and hated dealing with the people that went there, I wanted to drop out. Thankfully, I ended up not going through with my plans and I'm just finishing up my last semester of college. I'm waiting for my degree to be written up as we speak. I'm glad I didn't drop out. If I had, I'm not sure I would have gone back and if I had dropped out, I wouldn't really make much out of my life. It's just not possible to really do much of anything anymore without a highschool diploma.
1 person likes this
@apples99 (6556)
• United States
11 Aug 09
Well if I ever have children I wouldnt want them to drop out of high school becuse I understand the importance of completing your education, and at the very least I would want them to graduate high school, also becuse I've seen first hand how difficult life can be without it. sure a person can always get there GED, but its not really the same as getting a full high school diploma. and I wouldnt want any future I might have, to wake up one day and regret not finishing high school. Now dont get me wrong theres nothing wrong with getting a GED. in fact I applaud those who didnt give up on completing there high school equivalency/education. but you asked if dropping out of high school is acceptable well, for me my answer would be no, but everyone has different views on things especially when comes to education, but as I said I defintly would not want my children to drop out of high school.
1 person likes this
@glords (2614)
• United States
10 Aug 09
I guess each person must choose their path in life, but if my kids dropped out of high school, you can bet it wouldn't be for long. I would personally escort them to school if I had to. I had siblings who dropped out and finished up later with alternative schools and/or GED's. It was fine, they went on to college with no problems, but I would be pretty dang upset if my kids tried to pull that on me.
1 person likes this
@joel22 (18)
• Australia
11 Aug 09
I think that the worse thing a parent can do is put their children in public education. Why? Because unfortunately public school systems will only teach your children how to work for the boss! Now, with private schools it's a different story, They will grow up and be taught how to make the dollars work for them not the other way around. Why are the rich, rich and the poor and middle class always in debt? Simple! Because the poor and middle class have been brought up have similar ideas when it comes to money like saving and borrowing, They are always in debt. Where the rich wouldn't bother saving money, why would they? The dollar looses value over time! they would rather invest in stocks and bonds. They have been financially educated their entire life. I dropped out of public high school in year 9, and guess what? I'm glad I did because over the past 3 years I haven't put a thing I learned in High School to practice, and have earned hundreds of thousands of dollars online through powerful marketing techniques that the school system would have never taught me.. nor would have further education. One of the richest men in the wold, "Bill Gates" dropped out of High School as well. Just my 2 cents.
• United States
11 Aug 09
Wow, I appreciate your twist to the story and flipping the coin to a new side! And by the way, I did not know Bill Gates had dropped out of school-amazing! So did Tom Petty, LOL. People can become successful, no doubt. But it is not run of the mill, and I do slightly disagree with you when you will never use anything you learned in high school. Ture maybe you will never need to know when the Boston Tea Party occured, nor will you care what the capital of Peru is, the periodic tables may never be looked at again, and are we really going to need to know how to figure the radius of a circle? But there are little trick things put into schools that know doubt have educated people and have they not gone to school, they would seriously be going without. I think high school teaches if nothing else, a dedication to the end of it-the goal, and along the way students learn to deal with social aspects and authority figures in somewhat of a real world.
@MasonL (97)
• Trinidad And Tobago
11 Aug 09
I think that if teens intend to drop out of high school, the next step is that they plan to learn a trade, and that they are not planning to Idle. If teens don't do something possitive with their lives they are going to regret it. I don't support the dropping out of hight school thing,but if the dropping out or kicking out happens, they should get themselves involve in something that will affect their lives in a possitive way that will help them in the future.
• Canada
11 Aug 09
No, I think that it's important for kids to go through highschool. It's important especially in this day and age for kids to go through highschool. Now whether they go to college on their own is up to them.
• United States
22 Sep 09
Of course it depends on the situation, but I believe that way more students drop out of high school because they are lazy, undisciplined, or looking for other "troubles" that they can get into. Of course, college is optional, but most parents would love to see their children be of the highest success. I think kids look bad when they drop out of school. Unless being constantly bullied by teachers or other students, or for health reasons, kids who drop out are not disciplined and choose to quit something they really should not have the choice to quit.
@dbabcook (388)
• United States
10 Aug 09
In my opinion I believe that finishing High School should be one of the most important things you should do. College is a good thing as well, but in order to get anywhere you should by all mean atleast finish high school.
10 Aug 09
Yes, I agree with this as nowadays you must at the very minimum be a high school graduate in order to find a job. After attending high school, it gives you the basis to continue your studies with college to find a higher paying job.
1 person likes this
• Indonesia
11 Aug 09
Princess, It is not acceptable, I think. The teenagers as students, parents, school, government, non government organization, stake holders, and society are the factors which linked and matched for teenagers' education. We whould not shift the responsibility that the drop out because of teen's mentality, or their parents'low income. If the drop out happens, it is only accepted as a stepping stone fact for finding them other alternative education
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Aug 09
That is very good point-why would a teenager be allowed to make such a decision when they are still technically a CHILD?? I know that many teens think they are all gorwn up and do in fact make a lot of decisions on their own, but such a decision that could really affect their whole live should not be up to them. I think once a child is 18 AND graduated, that is when the adult responsibilities should set in. Any parent who blatantly allows their child to drop should be questioned in the first place. And why is it so necessary for a teen to want to leave so bad anyway?
1 person likes this
• Canada
21 Aug 09
I finished highschool, but did not go any further. I know of others who did not finish highschool. We are all just fine, and doing what we want in our lives. Formal education is not for everyone, and people will usually do whatever it is that works best for them. The rest of the world needs to respect that.
@cripfemme (7698)
• United States
11 Sep 09
Not mostly, but I'm in favor of kids who find high school boring and go to college instead. A lot of people here in Massachusetts do that. I'm in favor of that.
@cher913 (25782)
• Canada
11 Aug 09
i think 40 or 50 years ago, it was ok because people would hire you based on what you did and could do as opposed to now, because they hire you for what you KNOW. here where i live, people are really encouraged to finish highschool for their own sake.
• United States
11 Aug 09
That is true-my granmother did not get past 8th grade (she was born in 1913) because she stayed home to help raise her younger brothers and sisters. Not very fair to rob her of her education, but that was totally acceptable back then. Nowadays, most people do not drop out of school to find a trade that can do without an education-they drop out because they merely want to, and their life plan is so far from being written. Many people don't do anything for years after dropping out. I have known many people who dropped out of school who either still lived with their parents, become transients, or just mooch of off others without contributing.
@JenInTN (27515)
• United States
11 Aug 09
Highschool is the basic of education and I wouldn't want mine to drop out. Sometimes though there are people that are just not "book" kind of people. Their talent is more hands on. This doean't make them problem children..it just makes them the kind of people that have different learning techniques. Certainly at least a GED is required but sometimes they do better to get one and go to a trade school. I guess we all can't be doctors and lawyers. There actually need to be people of trade as well. I have known people to drop out and go on to trade school and make a handsome living.
• United States
11 Aug 09
I will not accept my kids to only have a GED. I think that lacks structure and discipline-I don't care if it is just as equally hard as a high school diploma, they will graduate! I am so for this because if a teen is willing to drop out of school at an early age, then they are showing that they are willing to give in when they either don't want to attend or it is too hard. This is given if we remain in the same area, and not have to move to some terrible district where violence overrrides. Or if one of my children ends up with a learning disabilty where it genuinely too hard for them to learn in that environment. Again ,I have been blessed that my children have done well in school so far.
21 Aug 09
Well at my school you didn't really have the option of dropping out of school. You have to stay in education untill you are 16 and have taken the GCSE exams. After that you can go into further education at school, college or go to work. I don't see anything wrong with that as there is no point being at school if what you really want to do is work based learning. I didn't find it at my school school but at my younger brother's school there are alot of students who disrupt lessons because they don't want to be there. I think it is nice students get the oppurtunity to eventually what they do and don't want to do so you can concentrate and learn better. For example I left school at 16 while my friends stayed on till they were 18 as I knew I wanted to do art and could go to college and learn it full time. I guess that could be seen as dropping out of school, my friends certainly looked down on me for going to college.
@suchi60 (912)
• India
11 Aug 09
Definitely not! A high school pass is necessary for eeryone who wants to oursue a good career, otherwise they will have to settle for the odd jobs which pay less. In a globalized world, competition is hotting up and with more and more people getting educated and seeking better prospects, high school droputs have little or no chance of a good job.
• United States
11 Aug 09
Sometimes there are reasons that dropping may be necessary-although I don't see valid reason to many points. I think some gets just get sick of having to get up every day and having to be productive. It's easier to sleep in and hang out with friends and have their own life, sure, but I am very biased against high school drop-outs and my children will (hopefully) never be in the class.