An evaluation of communities in schools dropout prevention program
On average the yearly high school graduation rate in the United States (U.S.) is 68-71% (Slaughter 2009). In order to increase the U.S. graduation rates, prevention programs have been implemented to keep students in school. The purpose of this thesis is to evaluate the Communities In School-North Texas (CIS) dropout prevention program. Using the commitment and involvement components of Hirschi's (1969) social bond theory, I hypothesized that CIS students who were more committed and involved in conventional activities would be more likely to promote to the next grade or graduate. T-tests were conducted in order to test the hypotheses. The results of the t-tests show that there were no significant differences between students that were promoted to the next grade/graduated or those that failed/dropped out when measuring time spent in commitment and involvement related activities. The findings suggest that other factors are associated with the high promotion/graduation rate of students enrolled in CIS. Suggestions for future research include incorporating qualitative data on the students' experiences in the program, comparing groups of similar students not in the program, and examining student performance over multiple years.