Stopping the Dropout Exodus

New York City has more dropouts than most cities have students. It also has more ways to help them stay in school

Katja Heinemann / Aurora for TIME

Tanya Garcia, 19, talks with counselor Andy Vernon-Jones (25) after class at South Brooklyn Community High School in Red Hook, Brooklyn, NY.

On May 9, TIME is co-sponsoring a national summit on the dropout crisis in Washington, led by Civic Enterprises and in conjunction with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, MTV, and the National Governors Association. To learn more and find out what you can do in your community, visit www.silentepidemic.org.

Kids who quit school don't just suddenly drop out; it's more of a slow fade. Typically it begins in the ninth grade, if not earlier, often when life hits a particularly nasty patch and racking up credits in class no longer seems especially compelling or plausible. Ernestine Maisonet started fading...

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