For Immediate Release
July 9, 2009

KDHE Office of Communications
communications@kdheks.gov, 785-296-0461

New Web Site Focuses on Kansas' Dropout Prevention Efforts

Kansans invited to DropIN and be part of the solution

Kansas DropINs, a collaboration of private and public sector agencies housed in the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), announced today the development of a new interactive Web site, www.kansasdropins.org, highlighting resources for the state’s dropout prevention efforts and upcoming Dropout Prevention Summit on October 20, 2009 in Wichita.

Kansas DropIns

“Youth dropping out of school has a dramatic effect on all Kansans,” said Roderick L. Bremby, Secretary of KDHE.  “It is crucial to our state’s economic viability and the health of our local communities that every young Kansan graduates prepared for life, instilled with a passion for lifelong learning.”

The Dropout Prevention Summit will be held at Wichita State University’s Rhatigan Student Center and is funded through a grant received by the America’s Promise Alliance, a national organization committed to ending the nation’s dropout crisis, and a generous donation by State Farm Insurance.

The Summit will highlight promising practices of Kansas’ current dropout prevention efforts, while identifying additional strategies to combat the issue.  Registration for the conference will open in late July and will be $15 per participant.  Every Kansan has a stake in ensuring our youth succeed and therefore all sectors – private businesses, government agencies, school staff, parents, youth and concerned citizens are invited to attend the summit.

Not graduating costs all Kansans.  During the 2007-08 school year, approximately 3,640 students dropped out of Kansas high schools – for this school year alone those dropouts cost $946 million in lost earnings, taxes and productivity over their lifetimes.  In addition, these youth are more likely to be in prison, get divorced, live in poverty, have poor health and utilize public assistance.

“The trickledown effect of students dropping out is alarming,” Bremby said.  “With ill prepared youth entering the workforce all sectors of the community suffer.  Successful solutions to this issue will require a collaborative effort.”

Kansas DropINS was formed in 2008 and is tasked with the planning the state’s Dropout Prevention Summit.  For more information about the summit or Kansas DropINS visit: www.kansasdropins.org.