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A fair for school dropouts

Oakland’s public schools lost more than 1,300 students in grades 7 through 12 during the 2006-07 year alone, according to the latest California Department of Education estimates. The district’s four-year high school dropout rate is estimated to be 36 percent.

Now that they’re gone, can these students be brought back into the fold? We’ll see.

Dropouts and/or their families can learn about the options available to them at a fair held from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday at Oakland City Hall. Those options include alternative education programs such as Advance Path, Peralta’s new Gateway to College program, Job Corps, and the East Bay Career Advancement Academy

If you’re interested in being a tutor or a mentor, you can stop by to learn about volunteer opportunities.

OUSD spokesman Troy Flint said he didn’t know how many would take advantage of the fair. “Even if we only get 10 or 15 kids to enroll in a job program or enroll in school, that would be worth it in my eyes,” he said.

At a call-a-thon last month, student government leaders from the district’s All City Council called 340 recent dropouts to invite them to the event. Lunch will be served.

You can see the brochure here.

Flint said Oakland’s Promise Options Fair is just the beginning of a more coordinated outreach effort to better understand why students leave school, and what can be done to steer them back on track. In your view, how can the city, the school district, and the community colleges best help these students?

Katy Murphy

Education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. Contact me at kmurphy@bayareanewsgroup.com.

  • Nextset

    And they say there is no such thing as a free lunch…

  • momo

    lol ,from where i m comming from , drop out can be effected by poor family , group of dum dum friend, gang and price, well those are the thing on the surface, but there are some that relate to confidental, peer presure, and most important of all is motivation