Relationship Roles

Teacher-student interactions can have a large influence on the likelihood of a student dropping out of high school. The better the relationships between students and teachers, the less likely the student is to drop out of school. However, if a teacher identifies a student as on track and having a positive attitude towards school, but does not necessarily have personal interaction with the student, that student has a higher chance of dropping out.

The relationships students have with their peers also play a role in influencing a student's likelihood of dropping out. Building relationships with anti-social peers was found by Battin-Pearson to be a strong and direct predictor of dropout beyond the influence of poor academic achievement. Students who had deviant friends were more likely to drop out of school early regardless of their achievement in school.

Parent-child relationships have also been found to be very influential in whether or not a student decides to stay in school. The better the relationship, as demonstrated through positive interaction and parental involvement, the more likely the student will stay in school. If a student does not have a good relationship with his/her parents, the student is more likely to drop out even if he has good grades and good behavior. This demonstrates that parental support is crucial, as students with good grades and behavior are typically more likely to stay in school. However, parental expectations or degree of education are not as influential. A study by Battin-Pearson found that these two factors did not contribute significantly to dropout beyond what was explained by poor academic achievement.