Should Dropouts Lose Their Drivers License?

Representative Rosie Berger
Representative Rosie Berger

Developing some sort of accountability for high school students that choose to drop out is the theory behind an idea that was recently raised by School District 2 Superintendent Craig Dougherty.

Representative Rosie Berger responded to the idea during an interview Tuesday on KROE'S Public Pulse program.

Berger offered her own suggestion to address high school dropouts.

Berger stated that one of her major concerns is that if a student chooses to drop out at say, age 16, that they would have trouble getting to and from work if they had a job, yet no license.

School District 2

School District 2 Superintendent Craig Dougherty obviously doesn't have enough to do if he has to resort to trying to impose or get support for this type legislation. What does not finishing school have to do with getting a drivers license. If they can pass the written and road test let them be. This is just another tool for government to punish people for not compliying with what they want us to do. Get a life Craig and lets work on the important issues so those kids want to stay in school and graduate.



a privilege?

Is s license a privilege or a right? I almost think in today's society it needs to be seen as a right, that's not to say that rights can't be restricted if we abuse them but I have real misgivings about taking a drivers license for things that have nothing to do with how we drive.

I think this is a pretty

I think this is a pretty absurd concept and just another example of government intrusiveness an ineptitude among the electeds. The privaledge of operating an automobile, hence issuance of liscense, has nothing to do with obtaining a decent education. The two issues are, and should remain, totally seperate.

The primary problem with todays educational system is that somewhere along the line our citizenry and government decided it was a "right" for all children and young adults to obtain an education. Rather, our society and parents should have maintained it to be a "privaledge" to obtain an education. Which is exactly as it should be, a privaledge. In conjunction with this false premise, we as a society, decided to channel funds into a system that is based upon attendance rather than performance. The latter promotes incompetence in the educational system because it lacks accountability. Accountability is meaningless when everything is expected, such as supposed educational entitlements, compared to that which is earned.

There are those among us who do not wish to obtain a high degree of education. Many of them will do quite nicely in life I suppose. Removal of a totally unrelated societal privaledge will do nothing to an already non-conforming person other than to contribute to their rebelious side. I think it's a stupid idea.



Sure the DMV would love to hear him tote off what they need to do...actually, I'd pay money to see it!

I'd like to see

For those students not college bound, I'd like to see the kids learn a trade (and I dont mean wood shop) the last two years of school. Not every intelligent, motivated kid needs, is meant for, or will do well on college. I think if those kids graduated high school with a marketable skill more would feel that school was relevant.

Glad other people see this as a problem!

I'm really glad I'm not the only one who sees this as a ridiculous notion! I usually don't agree with Ms. Berger, but she is absolutely right concerning this issue. I hope that this won't get any further than it has!

Let's try to empower our youth in positive ways and encourage education without adding more negative experiences to the public system. It's not easy being a high school student! Let's give them incentives to perform well and graduate... Let's get these kids to love learning!

Education rates directly impact the rates of social and criminal justice services. I hope we can turn our education system around and help our next generations live up to their unlimited potential instead of becoming a burden on families and society.

I agree

I agree that you cannot take away more rights...pretty sure lawmakers would as well. If it is legal to drop out at 16, the young people are not violating law. They are making a huge mistake that will impact them, as well as society. So I also agree that the age needs to change. It is too easy to drop out of school. The young people that are difficult at school because of learning problems, family difficulties or life struggles are often encouraged to leave when they become too much for a school district. You don't typically see kids leaving school with supportive parents, or those that are financially stable. I hate that we, as a society, have to parent as well as teach but that is the problem that wether we like or not, exists. I really appreciate Tongue River, Big Horn and Clearmont. They are small, and when a teenager is struggling they address it. They don't turn a blind eye. Sheridan on the other hand still wants to pretend that drugs are not in the schools, or that they are somehow not "missing the boat." They are a larger school, but no school in Wyoming is too big to not pay attention to the details. So is it the fault of a 16 year old wanting to drop out of school....partly. But if it happens so much that the district is addressing it...maybe the problem is not so much with the individual student but the school itself.

I agree it is definetly time

I agree it is definetly time that Sheridan High School and District 2 quit thinking that they are not a part of the dropout rate. They are one of the major contributors as to why a student feels the need to leave school. Most of them are made to feel less of a person than they are. The attitude protrayed to students and parents for SHS is that if you are not an athlete you are not worth their time.

Let's be honest though. This

Let's be honest though. This is a universal problem all over and is not exclusive to any one school. Are there things the school could be doing better to decrease the dropout rate? I'm sure there are. But there are lots of other issues likely going on with these kids as well that involve their home life, substance abuse, criminal justice system, etc. Schools cannot force kids to stay in school.

Schools can't force kids to

Schools can't force kids to stay but parents should be able too. If you are not a legal adult until 18 why can you drop out of school without parental consent at 16? A 16 year old cannot appear in court without a parent. A parent is still financially responsible for them. As a parent you are still required to provide them basic life needs. But yet we allow them to make a life altering decision by dropping out of school at 16.

hit the door

If my kids are old enought to drop out they can hit the door, and I really don't care what the law says.

I sure agree

It's been that way for a long time, if I had my way there would be a moratorium on sports programs for a couple of years. Athletics are not more important than learning. Even 20 years ago the athletes got away with conduct that another kid would have caught **** for. For whatever reason we are failing to impress on kids how much they will economically benefit for the rest of their lives from a good education. Perhaps they should have a program like they do with prisoners, have former dropouts come and talk about what the benefits of an education would have been.

MOM and DAD!

Mom and Dad have the biggest role in this drop-out rate. Make the parents be parents. It isn't ths schools job to keep kids in school, it's mom and dad's job. Everybody wants to have somebody else raise their kids and then they blame everybody else for their kids failures.
The schools offer the kids an opportunity to do things like LEARN. Teachers tell kids from the day they start Kindergarten that they need an education to help them get through life.
I don't blame schools for drop-out rates, the root of the problem starts at HOME. If you raise your kids right they will understand the importance of school. Get the loser mom and dads off the bar stools and have them pay attention to their kids. Of the kids that drop-out, how many of their parents actually attended a parent/teacher conference???

An effective education

An effective education requires 3 participants, school, students and parents. Sheridan Schools are great in elementary and early junior high ages. After about 8th grade the schools make every effort they can to dismiss the parents. When parents are only included in the education process when there is a problem it has a very negative effect on the parent child relationship that with teenagers is usually a little stressed already. We need to create positve envolvement between the students teachers/administrators and parents. Most parents really will do what ever is best for their child.

I agree

I agree that parents are in very large part to blame, doesn't mean we shouldn't ask what schools can do better. There is probably a lot of hope in making our schools better, not so much with parents on bar stools. Sadly poverty seems to be generational in a lot of cases.

Athletics or any activities

I have to disagree with your athletics comments, you probably would be suprised by how much athletics or any extra activity keeps more kids in school than runs them out. It's a vital part of learning also. They have to maintain grades to be eligible and the non-athlete doesn't have anything to maintain. So i would say they have even more pressure placed on them to perform. If anything i would say that students should be forced to participate in one extra activity before they can graduate, whether it be yearbook, sports, band, drama etc.

stand my my statement

I'll stand by my statements. For the most part Sheridan schools are very good, but for many years the athletic class has gotten away with things other kids would have been run through the ringer for. It is entirely inappropriate that this has been allowed to happen, It has in the past interfered with the atmosphere of the schools and created a lot of resentment from the kids who were not involved in athletics.

For one it seems pretty

For one it seems pretty stereotypical to say that all dropouts have no ambition beyond school. Secondly how is it going to "help" these individuals by taking away their driver licence?? All that is going to do is set them further back in a life that is already going to be riddled with obstacles to overcome.

As long as a drop out holds

As long as a drop out holds a full time job I feel that they should be able to hold a drivers license. If they do not hold a full time job then by all means pull it.. In my mind it's that simple.. I sometimes feel like the only reason the school is in a twist about drop outs is because they lose tax payers dollars for kids that don’t want to be there.

So what about adults that

So what about adults that don't have a job? Are you going to take away their license as well?!

"adults" don't have the

"adults" don't have the option to attend a tax paid school system for free...

I said that didn't have a

I said that didn't have a job~not that weren't in school. The only thing you will accomplish by doing this is one more unlicensed/uninsured driver out on the road.


Guess how many of the kids would STOP driving or STAY in school based on ZERO!!! Drop out rates need addressed for sure, but this is one more instance of Doeherty's lack of understanding the youth/families he is supposed to be serving! Go to a meeting where he totes himself off as having done a great job on a reservation (a reservation who was VERY HAPPY to see him leave!), he will talk in one breath how he wants to KICK OUT all the kids who don't fit into the small box he provides, yet he has no answer as to how he is going to educate these kids! Time to do some expelling...of the superintendent!

Sheridan is fortunate to

Sheridan is fortunate to have a great alternative school. It has helped to reduce the dropout rate, however Sheridan High School is not very effective in problem solving with potential high school dropouts by recommending Fort Mackenzie to the student or the parents. Seems to me that the schools should work together for the betterment and success of the student. Sheridan High School appears to have issues with alternative education or maybe Mrs. Wheeler is only threatend by the success they have had. When we have a resource that has proven to be successful why do we even need to consider taking away a young persons right to drive. Encourage the student to seek an alternative to complete their education. The part of the law that I question is why does a young person even have the right to drop out at 16 withour parental consent? They are not a legal adult until 18.

How many of these high

How many of these high school dropouts eventually get involved with the criminal justice system? How many of them cannot get decent jobs and end up with some form of public assistance that we the tax payers are footing the bill for. Not sure that this idea is the answer. But SOMETHING needs to be done to address this problem.

I would agree that "the

I would agree that "the right thing" needs to be done in helping our children get an education. I believe that there are some interactions between education and crime-rate, such as the following report. ( Maybe if we foot the bill for a proper education we would not have to foot the bill for the criminal justice system. I would rather have my tax dollars going to education instead of incarceration.



Sounds to me like the superintendent is getting a little big for his britches. What law are dropouts breaking? Ive seen several people with a few DUI's and still not lose their license. Seems too harsh to me. Especially with todays economy and low employment rates some high schoolers are obtaining jobs to help bring money into their homes. Hopefully Mr.Dougherty, you can come up with a better idea without taking away a persons rights. We seem to be losing too many rights lately!!!

IMO , its all about the

IMO , its all about the dollars.... The school gets paid based on the number of butts in the seat... Maybe all school funding should be based on final product.. This is what the school system wants to avoid... It's tricky; we built a school system on tax dollars. That system is bloated and the final product is of less quality then it was 20 years ago.. Kids who want to focus their skills on a long term vocational program, that gives them full time pay should not be restricted..

bad idea

High school drop out rates are sure a real problem, but tying a license to anything other than bad conduct on the road is a bad idea.

Losing Driver's License . . .

Linking a drivers license to High School graduation is confusing. If we expect children to obtain a High School education then we should discuss changing the legal dropout age to 18 and address issues to why children currently drop out. There is accountability for students who dropout, they will not be employed by employers who require a High School or equivalent certificate.


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