Edgenuity, a supplier of online and blended learning solutions, has announced a partnership with the National Dropout Prevention Network (NDPN) in the hopes of increasing high school graduation rates.
The partnership makes use of Edgenuity's work to pair technology with thousands of schools over the last 20 years to help keep at-risk students engaged in their studies and allow them to graduate on time.
Edgenuity and NDPN plan to create a discussion concerning effective dropout prevention strategies while also offering stakeholders resources, research, and best practices.
"Advances in education technology have created more options for a student to receive a quality education than ever before. However, nearly one in five students annually – over 700,000 children – are still leaving school without a diploma," said Sari Factor, CEO of Edgenuity and NDPN board member. "By sharing best practices and research-based solutions, we can increase engagement and inspire students to stay in school. NDPC/N fosters collaboration among educators, and we are excited to offer our partner schools and districts the opportunity to join in that conversation."
The sixth largest school district in Virginia, Henrico County Public Schools, is used as an example of this as officials work to determine who the at-risk students are before they drop out. Once they had found that students were most likely to drop out of school after the ninth grade, the district created a program geared toward students who were failing their first semester of freshman year. The program offers students access to online courses in addition to face-to-face instruction and support for credit recovery in an effort to help them stay on track throughout the year and continue to be successful in their high school career so that they will ultimately graduate on time.
Justine Jordan, Extended Learning Specialist at Henrico County Public Schools, said the district tries to do everything possible to help students gain the self-confidence to not only believe they can succeed, but to also understand that they are being given an opportunity to earn a high school diploma. She added that Edgenuity has allowed students throughout the district to stick with their schooling and take control of their future.
The partnership will offer Edgenuity customers access to a free one-year membership with the National Dropout Prevention Network. Network members can make use of a variety of resources meant to assist educators and other practitioners that hold concerns for youth at risk of dropping out. The network allows relationships to build between educators and organizations that work to prevent dropouts.
Dr. Sandy Addis, Director of the NDPC/N, said that Edgenuity understands that educators must research, think about, and select the best solutions in order to improve graduation rates. He went on to say that in order to solve the dropout crisis, educators, researchers, and private sector providers must all work together, sharing information and strategies.
Edgenuity is currently in use in eight of the top ten school districts in the US. Their flexible digital content is able to be molded to fit any online or blended learning program in order to support an individualized learning environment.