We’re thrilled to welcome our new client, Leslie Gavel! Leslie is a former social worker and a Calgary-based freelance writer whose work has appeared in Reader’s Digest, Canadian Living, More, Today’s Parent, Avenue and several North American newspapers, and has been produced for CBC national radio. Leslie’s new book, Dropout: How School Is Failing Our Kids (And What We Can Do About It), is her memoir of coping after her teenage daughter drops out of school, and an examination of the public school system itself.
In the fall of 2000, while in Grade 7, Leslie’s daughter began what would be a four-year disengagement from school. At first Leslie felt fear and anxiety, which manifested as blaming her daughter and herself. Then Leslie shifted from a place of blame to investigation, and began to analyze the school system itself. Did school—its history, structure, practice—play any role in underachievement? Did dropping out—an ultimate taboo for teenagers, along with pregnancy and drug abuse—really have to mean the end of the world for child and parent?
Told from the deeply personal perspective of a concerned parent, Dropout is a memoir about one family’s experience in the public school system. It also considers the latest research in alternative approaches to school, and offers suggestions for students who may not fit society’s definition of “success.”#page two news