This working paper examines dropping out of school from a life-course perspective, utilising an ecological model to examine factors affecting school continuity by drawing upon Young Lives longitudinal data in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, India.
Using mixed methods, the reasons cited by children are grouped into 3 broad categories: (i) pulled out (including to undertake paid jobs and family responsibilities); (ii) pushed out (institution and system-related factors such as distance to school); and (iii) opting out (disengagement with school or institution not caused by the school or institution, or outside pull factors).
Listening to the voices of children, the paper analyses push, pull and opt-out factors at both the individual and community level to investigate when and why children discontinue education, and correlates of dropping out, including the role of the community.
Young Lives is an international study of childhood poverty, following the lives of 12,000 children in 4 countries (Ethiopia, India, Peru and Vietnam) over 15 years. Young Lives is funded by the UK Department for International Development
Singh, Renu and Protap Mukherjee (2017) Diverging Pathways: When and Why Children Discontinue Education in India. Young Lives Working Paper 173. Oxford: Young Lives