The difference between attrition and persistence
The concept of *persistence* was new to me. It's the opposite of attrition. Instead of weeding out students, schools create ways to encourage them. At the Art Institute I saw a lot of grumbling among the teachers about this. It was seen as just a way for the school to continue to collect tuition money from people who, the teachers felt, had no ability to learn the curriculum. And while I have often wondered if schools that do this are cheating students out of their money, I have to admit that my naturally-positive personality understood persistence right away. I got into the habit of writing at the end of every syllabus that I wrote *you can do this!*
There was a song that was popular at the time that said, *I get knocked down, but I get up again!* That's persistence. It's all too easy to give up. It's too easy for the students and too easy for the teachers. Persistence is hard. And that's why it's rare.
Posted by Brad Hall