A dropout factory is
a high school where no more than 60 percent of the students who start as freshmen make it to their senior year.Some feel that Utah is the only state with no such schools because we have a lower rate of minority students, who tend to drop out at much higher rates. This may be a small factor. However, I think the real answer lies in the emphasis that Utah public teachers and administrators place on seeing Utah children succeed. This statistic is a great credit to Utah's public educators.
There are excellent people who subscribe to both sides of the school voucher debate. Many of those who oppose vouchers are public school teachers and administrators. Some of those who are in favor of vouchers are public school teachers and administrators, although I suppose they get a lot of pressure from some to be in the opposition camp.
At any rate, this is why I think vouchers can succeed in Utah, and NOT at the expense of public schools. I have a lot of public school teachers and administrators in my immediate and extended families. I also have a lot of friends who teach and administrate in the public schools as well. These are high-caliber people, who will continue to be high-caliber professionals even if vouchers become legal in Utah. With their being perennially underpaid, the fact that friends and family members are public educators says a lot about their dedication in the first place.
I support vouchers. But I do not do so as a slight to the public school system. Utah is one of the greatest states in the Union--with one of the greatest education systems as well. It's largely because of the dedicated men and women to teach our children in the public schools.