Smart Talk

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.

Listen to Smart Talk live online from 9-10 a.m. weekdays and at 7 p.m. (Repeat of 9 a.m. program)

Host: Scott LaMar

Smart Talk: American Graduate project on school dropouts

Written by Scott LaMar, Smart Talk Host/Executive Producer | Sep 30, 2015 10:06 AM
unhappy student with head on desk 600 x 340.jpg

What to look for on Smart Talk Wednesday, September 30, 2015:

WITF is one of more than 60 public media and television stations around the country that are working directly with their communities to address the dropout crisis. WITF and "American Graduate" project partners have developed a blend of TV, radio, online and community engagement efforts designed to raise public awareness and offer solutions to increase Central Pennsylvania high school graduation rates.

A record 81% of the class of 2013 graduated from American high schools within four years.  However, one million students drop out of the school each year.

There are more than 1,200 high schools across the country that graduate less than 67% of their students.  Forty-six of them are in Pennsylvania.

It's a real crisis because those without high school diplomas often face futures in low-skill, low paying jobs and are much more likely to live in poverty.

This Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., WITF-TV will air "American Graduate Day: Let's Make It Happen" -- a program that focuses on the organizations and individuals keeping students on the path to graduation.

Wednesday's Smart Talk features a discussion on getting more kids to graduate with our guests Carole Wacey, Vice President of WNET Education, Mike Kostel, Executive Producer of American Graduate Day, and Ryan Riley, President and State Director of Communities in Schools PA. Here is a video postcard of Alex Kadyszewski at work with Communities in Schools PA. 

Published in News, Smart Talk

Tagged under , , , , ,

back to top
  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-30 09:16

    Rich in Harrisburg emails:

    Not to simplify the root cause, but isn't parental involvement (starting with reading books at bedtime before toddlers can walk) the greatest predictor of high school success ?

    Also, while Pennsylvania's PSSA scores at schools get all of the attention, why aren't drop-out rates by school more clearly promoted ? For example, how many listeners know the graduation rate in Harrisburg schools is below 50% ?

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-30 09:47

    Pat in Waynesboro emails:

    While I admire the efforts to keep kids in school in order to graduate “on time,” I feel that an expansion of the GED program would be more helpful. Also, in prison educational programs. Many times young people just need to mature and find out on their own how important that high school diploma means to them. My husband and I spent a combined 70 years in public education. Yes, it takes a village. However, it ultimately comes down to the student making that effort to graduate.

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-30 09:48

    Cynthia from Harrisburg

    I have a 14 year old son who seems totally uninterested in school and has failed the 7th grade twice. I have no other ideas about how to motivate him. Are there any outside organizations that I can reach out to?

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-30 09:48

    Michael emails:

    While I am not proposing that people bypass education, it is the job market and not a degree‎ which will determine household income. If for ex more people obtain a degree, there will simply be a greater labor supply for a given job. This will result in the employer lowering the wage for those jobs. Personally I believe the focus needs to be on the exodus of jobs from the U.S. to overseas. THIS is what will drive our future standard of living. Reminder, there is more than one Country with a high percentage of people w degrees but a very low standard of living.

  • HAPPINESS AKA img 2016-07-14 08:45

    There’s no shortcut to developing strong writing skills, and your class assignments are designed to not only grow your knowledge base but improve your writing. Hiring essay writing services to meet class requirements is a short-term fix for skill deficits in writing and time management.