Students in urban public schools have little more than a fifty percent chance of graduating from high school. Urban debate keeps these students in school. It teaches them that, with effort, they can succeed; and it ignites their passion for learning. The results are dramatic. Urban debaters are 3.1 times more likely to graduate than non-debaters. Ninety-percent of urban debaters graduate on time, compared to only seventy-five percent of similar students who do not debate. Among the highest risk students, seventy-two percent of urban debaters graduate, as compared to only forty-three percent of non-debaters.
Read the research studies:
Journal of Adolescence, October 2012
Educational Research and Reviews, September 2011
72% OF URBAN DEBATERS WITH THE HIGHEST RISK OF DROPPING OUT, GRADUATE ON TIME
For the students who are more at-risk of dropping out, the statistics are bleak. Only 43% graduate on time. But 74% of the urban debaters in this same group graduate. Urban debate teachers these students that with effort they can succeed and it ignites their passion of learning.
EACH SEMESTER THAT A STUDENT DEBATES, HIS/HER GRADES IMPROVE
While urban debaters enter high school with higher GPA’s on average than non-debaters, their grade improve steadily during high school; in contrast to non-debaters who grades remain flat. Urban debaters earn an average GPA of 2.92 at the end of their first semester in high school and gain .02 units in cumulative GPA for each semester that they debate. By the spring of 12th grade, they have an average GPA of 3.06. Non-debaters earn a lower GPA in their first semester of high school, an average of 2.23. They complete high school with an average GPA of 2.30, substantially unchanged.
AT GRADUATION, THE AVERAGE GPA OF AN URBAN DEBATER IS 3.23, SIGNIFICANTLY ABOVE THE COLLEGE BENCHMARK
According to previous research, a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or high is a key indicator of college readiness. Among those who graduate, urban debaters complete high school with a cumulative GPA of 3.23, significantly above the college readiness benchmark. Non-debaters complete high school with a GPA of only 2.83, significantly below the benchmark.
AFTER GRADUATING FROM HIGH SCHOOL, 86% OF URBAN DEBATERS ENROLL IN COLLEGE
After high school graduation, 86% of urban debaters attend college. Among similar students who do not debate, only 78% attend college. Urban debaters are 89% more likely than non-debaters to choose a four year college or university. This is significant because a student who enrolls at a four year college or university is much more likely to graduate than one who attend a two year college.
URBAN DEBATERS ARE 80% MORE LIKELY TO GRADUATE FROM COLLEGE
Urban debaters enter college prepared to succeed. Through debate they learn the critical thinking and communication skills that are essential for college success. Urban debaters are more likely to test as college read in English (15% more likely), Reading (15% more likely), Science (27% more likely), and Math (10 % more likely).
Educational Research and Reviews Vol. 6(9), pp. 622-635, 5 September, 2011 Available online at http://www.academicjournals.org/ERR