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Does Dropping out of School Enhance Delinquent Involvement? Results From a Large-Scale National Probability Sample

NCJ Number
Criminology Volume: 31 Issue: 2 Dated: (May 1993) Pages: 149-172
Date Published
24 pages
Data from the first two waves of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth were used to study the relationship of the effects of dropping out of school on subsequent delinquency.
Only 10 of 24 dropout-delinquency relationships were significant. Dropouts were more likely to have higher levels of delinquency than high school graduates, but this was not always because they dropped out. The most consistent finding was that dropping out because of a dislike for school or other unspecified reasons was related to future involvement in delinquency, regardless of the type of offense, namely, violence, theft, or drug selling. These groups of dropouts were more likely to be delinquent than the high school graduates, and this appeared, in part, to be due to dropping out. Those who left school due to problems at home did not report higher levels of offending than high school graduates, and for these youths dropping out did not lead to subsequent criminal behavior. 5 tables and 32 references

Date Published: January 1, 1993