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New drop-out prevention initiative to focus on attendendance

By Rachel Lippmann, St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis – The anti drop-out coalition founded by a Missouri state Representative has announced a new initiative to keep kids in school.

Volunteers from In It 2 Win will start calling and knocking on the doors of St. Louis Public Schools students who are absent from school for more than a few days.

"We understand that once they start a pattern of missing school, their opportunity of completing their challenge" - graduating from high school - "is going to become greater," said Lee Scott, the board president of In It 2 Win. "So we're trying to reduce that."

State Representative Jamilah Nasheed, a high school dropout who eventually got her GED, founded In It 2 Win. Many of the students the volunteers will contact, she said, don't have parents that will push them to stay in school.

"The average kid that's wreaking havoc in our community, 15 years old. And their parents are 35, 36 years old, and they're hanging out on the street corners with them," she said.

The program right now is only in the St. Louis Public Schools. But Nasheed and Scott hope to expand it to the rest of the state and eventually nationwide.

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