High School Students Risk Suffering Academically When Families Move

Jim Liebelt | Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for the HomeWord Center for Youth and Family at Azusa Pacific University | Monday, December 14, 2015

High School Students Risk Suffering Academically When Families Move

*The following is excerpted from an online article from iSchoolguide.

A new study reveals high school students risk suffering academically when their families move, highlighting the potential trauma on early teens of switching schools.

The study, based on data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health (Add Health), found that students who moved at least once over a 12-month period have a roughly 50% decreased likelihood of obtaining a high school diploma by the age of 25, regardless of whether students move to a poorer or less-poor neighborhood.

Add Health followed teens from early adolescence in 1994 to early adulthood in 2008.

The study found 5.6% of the families had moved once, and 2.2% had moved two or more times within a two-year period.

Teens who came from divorced families had the highest likelihood of experiencing more than one move.

Children in our study who were in divorced families were four times more likely to have moved once, and more than 10 times as likely to have moved twice within the initial two-year period of the study.

Families with older teens who had been suspended from school in the previous year and who had experienced neighborhood disorder were more likely to have moved as well.

In general, teens from more affluent families were less likely to experience a move. Children whose parents had more education were 50% less likely to experience one move, and 66% less likely to experience more than one move.

The study found that teens who experience a move are half as likely as those who do not move during their early adolescence period to have received a high school diploma by early adulthood.

Adolescents who experience one move have a 62% probability of completing high school, and the probability of completion for those who move more than once is 60%.

The type of move - downward (to a poorer neighborhood), parallel (to an equally poor neighborhood) and upward (to a less poor neighborhood) - did not affect these numbers, regardless of the type of neighborhood.

Source: iSchoolguide