Minneapolis schools try to get dropouts back to class

The Minneapolis Public Schools are recruiting volunteers to knock on doors and encourage dropouts to come back to school.

Mary Barrie, who works on dropout recovery for the school district, said that roughly 1,300 teen and adult students who were attending classes last year haven't shown up so far this fall.

On Saturday, Sept. 10, volunteers will fan out in areas where students have dropped out of high school or adult education programs as part of the "We Want You Back" campaign.

"We know areas of the city where there are more young people who have left school than others, so we'll be targeting those areas," Barrie said.

Last year, a similar effort signed up about 100 students to meet with school staff to plan a way to finish their diplomas.

The Minneapolis Public Schools are working with city and county officials, along with the Minneapolis Youth Coordinating Board.

Barrie said for some students, life gets in the way of school.

"We have such a high number of homeless and highly mobile students in Minneapolis, and that's a big concern. When you have such inconsistency in your home life, it's difficult to have the consistency of school," she said. "We really want to make sure our students who have these other challenges in their lives know that we're standing ready to support them to get back into school."

People interested in volunteering can visit the campaign's website.

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