15th April 2010
John Walshe, writing in the Independent today, reports that one in six pupils are leaving school before completing their Leaving Certificate examinations.
The figures, taken from an ESRI report, No Way Back? The Dynamics of Early School Leaving, show that the Government has failed to reach its target of reducing those numbers to one in 10.
The problem is particularly marked for young men, from lower socio-economic backgrounds; early school leaving is linked to social disengagement and spells of unemployment, in some cases becoming a contributing factor in a pathway which leads to imprisonment.
A report by New Philanthropy Capital states that those young people not in some form of education or training and employment are three times more likely to offend. Similarly, exclusion from school and issues related to learning difficulties are also considered as potent risk factors for young people.