Education's Chapter 1 and 2 Programs and Local Dropout Prevention and Reentry Programs

T-HRD-87-2: Published: Mar 3, 1987. Publicly Released: Mar 3, 1987.

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GAO discussed its recent work on the Compensatory Education Program and the Education Block Grant Program, and provided an analysis of nearly 500 local dropout prevention programs. GAO found that the Compensatory Education Program: (1) had few errors in its local school districts' student selection decisions; (2) may not be reaching some of the nation's needier children because the scores that school districts used as eligibility criteria varied; and (3) had limited and infrequent compliance monitoring at the state level for service comparability between schools. GAO noted that, since the education block grant does not require state program reports, it was difficult to analyze or control the use of funds for program administration. GAO also found that the majority of youth that local dropout programs served were minorities from socioeconomically disadvantaged households. Program officials identified several factors critical to effective programs, including: (1) caring and committed staff; (2) secure classroom environments; (3) personalized instruction; (4) flexible curricula and school hours; and (5) links to social service agencies and the employer community.

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