Intervention Strategies Utilized in a Virginia Public High School with Improved Graduation Completion Index Values

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Virginia Tech

With the recent implementation of the Graduation and Completion Index (GCI), schools in the Commonwealth of Virginia are charged with graduating students within a four year time frame. The purpose of this study was to investigate the intervention strategies implemented by a school receiving the status of 'warned' for falling below the GCI benchmark in the school year 2011-2012 and subsequently receiving 'meets benchmark' status for the next two school years, 2012-2013 and 2013-2014. This study sought to determine what support and interventions this school provided for students who successfully graduated from high school within the designated four year time frame. A review of previous research and findings demonstrated the need for further research in this area. The intervention strategies implemented at a school that received 'warning' status yet currently maintains 'meets benchmark' status could benefit other schools and students.

Some of the identified intervention strategies were: a) in-school detention was used as an intervention strategy; b) calling home and home visits were used as intervention strategies; c) the four by four block schedule was used as an intervention strategy d); attendance, retention, and discipline influenced a student's decision to stay in school; e) intervention strategies for students must be supported at the elementary, middle, and high school levels; and f) additional academic support (Saturday school) was an effective strategy for meeting the GCI benchmark.

Implications were that school leaders should: a) consider creating a team that meets frequently to address the needs of at-risk students; b) identify ways to engage parents and the community in meeting the needs of students who are at risk of dropping out; c) consider alternatives to out of school suspension; and d) consider the four by four block scheduling model to support on time graduation rates for students.

Graduation Completion Index, intervention strategies, retention, attendance, discipline