Archbold, OH

Parents Must Be Involved To Reduce Dropout Problem

Each year, 19,000 Ohio students drop out of school before earning a high school diploma.

That’s more than the population of Defiance, and more than the populations of Bryan and Napoleon combined.

Susan Tave Zelman, Ohio superintendent of public instruction, revealed the statistic during the Northwest State Community College State of the College program, Thursday, Nov. 15.

Zelman described a four-part plan to curb or eliminate the number. She suggested that Northwest State could be the field-test site of the program.

Zelman’s proposal certainly is noble. Anything to reduce the number of dropouts is good.

But the real solution isn’t programs comprised of buzzwords and hype. Throwing money or technology at the dropout problem won’t solve it.

The real solution is parents. Caring parents, involved parents, parents who take an active interest in their children’s education. Parents who provide a stable, supportive home environment; who monitor their children’s homework and activities.

The answer is parents who firmly correct youngsters when their attention wanders, and are just as quick to praise high achievement.

It is not an easy job. But if a person or couple makes a choice to bring another human being into this world, it is their responsibility to make sure the child is given the building blocks for success in school, work, and life.

It isn’t teachers’ responsibility to be the parents. It’s not the churches’ responsibility to be the parents. It’s not the community’s responsibility to be the parents.

It’s the parents’ responsibility to be the parents.

The real key to solving the dropout problem is parents, actively involved in their children’s education.

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