An Investigation of the Perceptions of Ninth Grade Latino Male Students on Factors that Impact ther School Success
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The high school dropout rate is a crisis for the nation, states and local school districts. While District X, a large urban/suburban district in the Mid-Atlantic region graduation rate increased, the Latino subgroup reflected a gap of 11 percentage points. Most of the students in this subgroup are males. This qualitative study investigated the perceptions of 29 Latino male ninth grade students in three District X high schools based on their Early Warning Indicator Report (EWIR) band-green (low risk) or red (high-risk) that support or challenge their successful school engagement and school completion. Further, the study examined the internal pushout, external pullout and supportive pull factors that contribute to or hinder Latino males’ school engagement to increase the number of Latino male high school graduates. Five forty-five minute focus group sessions were conducted. The students completed a nine question demographic survey and responded to a 12 question query to questions regarding their perceptions of the internal, external and supportive factors that support or hinder their school engagement. Using NVivo to analyze responses from the five focus groups, eight main themes were identified Overall, the findings pointed out that green (low risk) were more critical and reflective than their red (high risk) and mixed group peers in each of the eight themes including negative personal outlook.