The Effectiveness of Early Warning Indicators in Dropout Prevention, 2016

October 31, 2016

Early Warning Indicators (EWIs) are markers that identify students who are moving towards thresholds of performance indicating they are off track for graduating on time. While the specific benchmarks for these indicators can vary across school districts, they usually include attendance, behavior, and course performance.


This study examined the 2016 cohort of middle school students to determine which factors were most predictive of dropping out of high school.


Students who were more likely to drop out possessed several characteristics. In order of importance, these were: being suspended or expelled four or more times during middle school, being economically disadvantaged, being out of school for 3 or more days between enrollments, failing two or more core courses over their cumulative time in middle school, being chronically absent (missing 20 or more days of school), being male, and being overage for grade.


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