This document investigates the issues behind drop out rates in Albania, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Mongolia, Slovakia and Tajikistan. It specifically aims to answer the questions who are the children that are not in school, where are they and why are they not where society intends them to be?
The authors argue that only when we have a clearer understanding of these questions, can answers be produced, answers that go beyond the simple responses of compulsory schooling laws, enforcement, and data collection on school attendance. Surveys have identified a wide range of factors affecting drop out rates including poverty, lack of motivation, and teacher/school unfriendliness.
A series of recommendations are put forward for policy makers including:
legislatures and policymakers should ensure that public education is free of charge at the point of use—at least during the compulsory stage
policymakers should ensure that children who have dropped out of school or are not attending school are treated fairly and with respect
ministries of education must scrutinise education policies and practices to identify and remove possible sources of push-out
ministries of education should authorise inspectors and local education authorities to collect accurate data.