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Junior Achievement Job Shadow Program - How Business Can Help Attack the Drop-Out Crisis in America

Junior Achievement Job Shadow Program - How Business Can Help Attack the Drop-Out Crisis in America

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Published by JANewYork
The high school drop-out crisis has far-reaching economic implications. Read
how Junior Achievement and AT&T are tackling the issue by providing students
with real-world job shadow experiences that enhance the relevancy of
education.


The high school drop-out crisis has far-reaching economic implications. Read
how Junior Achievement and AT&T are tackling the issue by providing students
with real-world job shadow experiences that enhance the relevancy of
education.


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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: JANewYork on Nov 15, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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01/07/2011

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Job Shadow
How Business Can Help Attack theDropout Crisis in America
JA Worldwide
®
gratefully acknowledges AT&T forsupporting the development of this white paper.
September 2010
 
1
Introduction
America’s economic fabric hinges on one primaryresource– our youth. Our businesses need to be able to relyon them having new ideas, technical skills, and leadershipattributes.Yet, a crisis is threatening young people, and it is puttingour businesses and economy at risk.Just as our economy is recovering, the rate of teensdropping out of high school hovers around 30 percent, evenmore troubling, that percentage rises to nearly 50 percent insome of America’s largest cities.Between 2006 and 2007, students from low-incomefamilies were about 10 times more likely to drop out of high school compared to high-income students. Sadly, thetrend appears to be worsening.There is overwhelming evidence on the cost of dropouts tosociety. Since schools receive federal dollars based uponschool enrollment, each student who leaves the systemmeans less revenue for school districts. Dropouts earnless on average than graduates, thus generate fewer taxdollars. Dropouts who are unemployed depend on costlygovernment support services.A study by Johns Hopkins University estimated the costto society of lost wages and increased poverty at $250,000 per dropout. That comes to more than $300 billion of lost productivity over their lifetimes, as estimated by theAlliance for Excellent Education.
In addition, not nishing high school increases the
likelihood of becoming involved in crime. Nationwide, 68 percent of inmates in state prisons did not graduate fromhigh school.
The rate o teensdropping outo high schoolhovers around 30percent.
 
2
Job Shadowing
 A Program that Helps Reverse the Trend
Why do students – many with tremendous potential --drop out? Many students with passing grades drop out of school because they are bored and unable to comprehendthe connection between classroom success and getting agood job, according to the groundbreaking 2006 surveyreport,
The Silent Epidemic
, commissioned by the Bill andMelinda Gates Foundation.Sixty-nine percent - or 7 in 10 - of the respondents, whoincluded nearly 500 ethnically and racially diversestudents from cities, suburbs and rural areas, reported
they simply were not motivated. Four out of ve (81
 percent) of students who participated in the GatesFoundation survey said there should be a stronger connection between school and work and that thereshould be more opportunities for real-world, experientiallearning. These survey results constitute a loud wake-up call for an innovative approach to educationthat demonstrates relevancy to contemporary life.One program that forges the critical link between schooland the workplace is job shadowing.Job shadowing links schools and businesses by providingstudents with an opportunity to spend time in a realworkplace. Students learn from professionals about theskills and competencies necessary to be successful. Theyneed this kind of connection to businesses, because intoday’s service economy they often do not know exactlywhat adults do at work, as young people did in agrarian andindustrial times. Job shadowing helps students learn aboutwork by taking them behind the scenes in a business, often
 providing their rst real look at jobs in the 21st Century.
Spending time at a work site can even help change students’attitudes about school and about their future. A
 
recent
 
report that surveyed students after a Junior AchievementJob Shadow Initiative found that98 percent of students agreed that doing well in
•
school helps them achieve career goals
Job shadowinghelps studentslearn about workby taking thembehind the scenesin a business.

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