Conversations That Matter: Can data help at-risk youth?
A scientific approach to addressing social issues using administrative data could improve outcomes in education, health, social services and crime.
That is the hypothesis of a paper by four Canadian economists. The authors say there is a “relationship between measures of secondary educational attainment and indicators of poor outcome later in life. Poor outcomes are seen to primarily manifest among high school dropouts.”
One of the authors of the paper, Bill Warburton, says that “by using data we can identify 2,000 students in a given year that are at extreme risk of having poor educational outcomes.”
“The earlier we can identify these students, the earlier we can provide them with the specific resources they need to dramatically improve the likelihood of graduating from high school.”
The paper boldly states the challenges. “At first blush, the solution seems clear: governments should invest in proven interventions early in children’s lives.”
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