Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment. Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.
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Host: Scott LaMar
Radio Smart Talk for Friday, April 19:
The latest statistics indicate 83% of Pennsylvania students who start ninth grade actually graduate high school. The numbers are much grimmer for African-American and Latino students who graduate at a rate of less than 66%. There are school districts in Pennsylvania where less than half of the students who begin ninth grade will receive a high school diploma.
Not only will high school dropouts earn less money over their lifetimes but will also have fewer opportunities to succeed in a career. In fact, a dropout will earn about $10,000 less in average annual income than a high school graduate and almost $20,000 less than the student who gets a two-year Associates Degree in college. Obviously, not all high school drop outs go on to break the law, but 82% of prison inmates are high school drop outs.
High school dropouts impact all of us and not just themselves. A recent study showed that if the students who dropped out of the class of 2009 had graduated, the nation would have benefited from nearly $335 billion over the course of their lifetimes.
Monday's Radio Smart Talk will feature Nathan Mains, the president and state director of Communities in Schools of Pennsylvania. Communities in Schools is the nation's largest dropout prevention organization.
We'll discuss who drops out and what strategies work to keep kids in school.
Nathan Mains, president and state director of Communities in Schools of Pennsylvania
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