Through the Dropout Prevention Specialist (DPS) certificate
program, you can learn to identify potential dropouts, understand
the reasons students leave school, and gain the skills to
implement prevention strategies in an effective and timely
manner. You will learn how to involve all stakeholders (teachers,
parents and students) to prevent students from leaving school
This program is delivered entirely online.
The issues of dropping out and dropout prevention cannot be
separated from issues affecting our total economic and social
structure. These issues include poverty, unemployment,
discrimination, the role of the family, social values, the
welfare cycle, child abuse, and drug abuse. - Peck, Law, and
Mills 1987, p. 3
Through the Dropout Prevention program, participants are able to:
- become school-wide catalysts for school improvement efforts
- increase their collaboration with school-based interagency
services to improve success expectations for at-risk students
- network with other dropout professionals
- exchange best practices, ideas and methodologies with their
- earn professional development units from Sacramento State
- pursue career advancement
Ideal candidates include:
- outreach consultants
- teachers, principals and district administrators
- counselors and classified school service personnel
- probation officers, child welfare, attendance and social
- others who work with at-risk students in schools
The program consists of four required courses for a total of 12
academic credit units. Successful completion of all four courses
is required to earn the certificate.
Participants will receive a grade of Credit (CR) or No Credit
(NC) based upon their degree of participation, completion of
assignments and quality of work submitted for all courses.
Courses are online, with mandatory attendance required at
specific times for credit.
Participants will have one week to complete online course
assignments from the date they are posted by the instructor.
Assignments will consist of guided online threaded discussions,
assigned readings and fieldwork activities within each course.
Clear criteria for successful completion of assignments will be
provided with each task assigned.
This program is designed to be completed as a cohort and is not a
self-paced program. Participants should be committed to
completing the program within the scheduled time frame, and
courses must be taken in order. There is no guarantee that
participants will be able to make-up courses that are missed.
In order to participate effectively online, all participants must
have access to a newer model computer and a strong Internet
To participate and complete assignments, all students need to
have access to Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint, a newer web
browser (Internet Explorer 5.0 or higher, Mozilla Firefox 1.2 or
higher) and Acrobat Reader.
Registration for the Dropout Prevention Specialist program is
competitive and enrollment is limited. Participants are accepted
on a first come, first serve basis, and must apply to the program