A Rural Alternative School and Its Effectiveness for Preventing Dropouts

Christina Johnston, Gregory Cooch, Connie Pollard

Abstract


This article describes a successful alternative school located in northwest Wyoming. Students who attend this school need an atmosphere that is accepting of their differences and allow them to express themselves without fear of ridicule or punishment. These children are looking for a safe, secure place to complete their education, a place where their unique differences are respected. Bear Lodge is one such alternative high school. Students at Bear Lodge share their perspective and provide a living testimony as to the importance of alternative schools in allowing students to meet with academic success and social acceptance. Bear Lodge allows its students to work at their own pace in a caring and noncoercive environment. Here students attend school regularly, follow a standards-based curriculum, form close relationships with their peers and teachers, and know that the staff believe they can be successful in and out of school.

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