PBS NEWSHOUR Senior Correspondent Jeffrey Brown examined America’s high school dropout problem in a report from Reading, Pa., designated by the Census Bureau as the country’s poorest city.

In the story, Brown talked to Reading students about why they don’t stay in school and to the city’s leaders about the lack of economic growth in the city and the absence of job prospects for Reading’s youth.

“The city has a population that about 63% have high school diplomas. That compares to 80% in Pennsylvania,” William Bender, a member of the city’s Poverty Commission, told Brown. “That’s not a good statistic for us to be looking at.”

America's high school dropout problemBrown’s report from Reading is part of a PBS NEWSHOUR project called American Graduate: Let’s Make It Happen.  

During this 18-month project, NewsHour correspondents will travel the country examining the roots of America’s highschool dropout problem and its consequences for American society.

Jeffrey Brown reports on America’s high school dropout problem from the “poorest city in the nation”

While our correspondents report on the depth of the problem, the PBS NEWSHOUR’s Student Reporting Labs will help classrooms and afterschool programs investigate the dropout issues from the perspective of the young people most affected.

Finally, educators across the country will get the chance to weigh in on the problem through a series of Teacher Town Halls organized by Macneil/Lehrer Productions and 12 public television stations.

pat wymanPat Wyman is a best selling author and founder of HowToLearn.com . Her books include Instant Learning for Amazing Grades.  She is also a university instructor at California State University, East Bay and creator of the FREE Personal Learning Styles Quiz and Eye-Q Reading Inventory.

Pat works diligently to provide tools and information to help students, teachers and parents eliminate America’s high school dropout problem.