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Their Hearts and Hopes Have to
Get to The Top Too!

Dear ALAS Subscribers,

Hello and wonderful school year!
Educators, we're all feeling the go, go, go! …

I’m sure you’re feeling the press now, right?

You look out at the sea of faces in your school or classroom, and feel the urgency to get those faces to the top of the mountain. Yes! Those kids need to be there!

Yet, today, I just remind everyone that along with our students’ minds, unless we also bring their hearts and hopes to the top, all we have at the summit is an empty body.

Only their hearts and hopes can create the vision, the belief, the desire and sense of ownership required for them to create the beautiful future that stretches out before them, mountain after mountain. May I suggest, next time you ask yourself what standard you are teaching, also ask what vision you are teaching.

Tack up this mountain photo where you can see it, to remind yourself when you feel “THE PUSH” that their hearts and hopes must not be left behind.

Learn more

Katherine Larson
Executive Director, ALAS Dropout Prevention

Nine Ways to Boost Rapport with
Disengaged Adolescents

Some of these are strategies recommended to use in every interaction you have with a student (*); some are to be used once in a while.

1. *Ask the student for permission to offer them advice. Don’t assume you have the right to offer advice to every student just because you are the grown-up and assigned authority figure. When adults offer advice without asking permission first, it shows a degree of arrogance or ignorance that is off-putting to students. Even if they don’t show outright disrespect, the student is not likely to take to heart or head what you have to offer. Empower your advice, and gain the student’s regard, by asking the student if you may offer your perspective as wise counsel. And thank the student for the gift they gave you for being permitted to offer your advice.

Learn eight more ways to boost rapport


ALAS Resilience Builder ©

High School Edition
Middle School Edition



The only program on the market today that is solidly-proven to give students the skills they need to achieve the optimism and persistence and discipline to dream big and make it happen … despite circumstances!

Students learn powerful, cutting-edge skills and behavior strategies of self-control, problem solving, leadership, goal orientation, persistence, optimism, happiness, stress management, self-directedness, and self-confidence.

The ALAS Resilience Builder© program has been proven, in three university studies, to transform and boost youth behavior and performance. This program shows the educator how to support students as they gain expertise in implementing their new habits and skills.

The Resilience Builder© program is a core feature of the Alas Dropout Prevention program recognized by What Works Clearinghouse.

Why We Must Consciously Work
to Build Student Resiliency

By Katherine Larson, Ph.D.

Almost all school dropouts face adversity. Although students drop out for a wide variety of reasons tied to personal stories, most students who drop out, experience a great deal of adversity and hardship because of risk factors related to poverty, being from a single parent household, being a minority, being male, having limited English ability, having learning or emotional disabilities, moving frequently or being overage. The question is - how can we help students cope more successfully with the adversity they experience?

I see three compelling reasons why we must, and why we can build student resiliency and help our students cope more effectively with adversity.

Learn three compelling reasons

Four Actions to Jump Start Your Students
in the New Year!

Sometimes little changes can make a huge difference in improving our lives.

But what little changes?

Teach your students to answer these 4 simple questions to identify powerful little changes they need to make now, and jump start themselves into success.

Read more

Frustrated? Irked? Impatient with Co-workers?


The next time you find your frustration or impatience rising at work, instead of filling your mind with silent shouts of “not this again” or blanketing your brain with words such as idiot and numbskull, you might try this nifty little mantra to move things forward. You could be amazed at the results you achieve.

Read more

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