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"Maybe I would have stayed in school"

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A Motivation Matters reader alerted me to a thoughtful interview that KMOX Radio in St. Louis recently did with Claire Wyneken of the Wyman Center, which is working to help reduce the dropout rate in the St. Louis area through outreach and a focus on helping teenagers develop better long-term relationships with adults.

Ms. Wyneken had just attended a summit in Washington to talk about the problem of high school dropouts. Educators, researchers, and teenagers attended the summit, and she was particularly struck by some of the comments from teenagers, according to the KMOX interview. "'If people had pushed me a little harder,'" one teenager told her, "'maybe I would have stayed in school.'"

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And maybe this was true for those few teens. But what about those who were not available to go on the show because they were at work...buidling a life for themselves on their own terms. Learning about something that they are intersted in through on-the-job-training and the "school of hard knocks" which has been absolutely the best way for two young people that I talk to on a regular basis.

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