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West Virginia

April 4, 2005

House Bill 2897: An Act to Raise the Compulsory Attendance Age

Sponsor:
Delegate Azinger

Summary:
This bill would have raised the compulsory attendance age from the current age of 16 until age 18, or until graduation. The bill died in committee.

Status:

03/07/2005(House): Introduced In House
03/07/2005(House): To House Education
03/31/2005Bill did not pass out of house of origin by crossover date: bill defeated.

HSLDA's Position:
Oppose.

Action Requested:
No more action is necessary.

Background:

  • The statistics in the second paragraph come from the February, 2005, publication of the Manhattan Institute's Center for Civic Innovation, "Public High School Graduation and College-Readiness Rates: 1991-2002," by Dr. Jay P. Greene.
  • Rhode Island students who are enrolled in school must attend until age 18 unless parents give written consent to leave at age 16.
  • States which compel attendance only to age 16 have better high school completion rates than states that compel attendance to 17 or 18, on average. (Source: "Dropout Rates in the United States: 2000", pp. 9-10, 40-41; National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education, Office of educational Research and Improvement, Doc. No. NCES 2002-114.)
  • States which compel attendance only to age 16 also have lower dropout rates than states that compel attendance to 17 or 18, on average. (Source: same as above.)
  • According to statistics published by the federal Office of Juvenile Justice and Dropout Prevention, a higher compulsory attendance age is not correlated to a reduction in juvenile crime.
    (Source: "Juvenile Arrests 1999." Washington, D.C.: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, 2000.)

 Other Resources

Bill Text