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Early Warning Systems: Dropout Prevention Framework



On-Track/Early Warning Systems (EWS1) use local and historical data and research-based indicators to help identify students showing signs of risk for missing key educational milestones, including on-time high school graduation and postsecondary readiness. Early warning indicator data are used with other sources of data and insights from people (including students) to help understand underlying student needs.  

Most EWS collect data on three essential indicators that research has shown are most predictive of risk for not graduating, often referred to as the ABCs of early warning data:  

  • Attendance: In middle school: missing 9 days/quarter (or 36 days/year). In high school: missing 10% of instructional time.  

  • Behavior: Two or more mild or more serious behavior infractions.  

  • Course Performance: In sixth through eighth grades: failure in English or math, a grade point average of less than 2.0. In ninth through 12th grades: any course failure, failure to pass the ninth grade. 

    Full Documents

    The following are reference documents. 

    • Overview: This document provides a more detailed overview of On-track/Early Warning Systems
    • Research: This document provides links and titles of research that has informed the dropout prevention framework strategies. 

    Funding Opportunities

    There are multiple competitive grants, among other funding sources that can be used to support the implementation of the technical and human resources of Early Warning and On-Track systems. 

    Implementation Spotlight

    This section will be updated during the 2023-24 school year.