MPR: Program helps Red Lake Nation with drop-out rates

"Jerilyn Graves is unemployed, lives on public assistance and at 32 wonders if she'll ever have a job. One of her biggest regrets is that she dropped out of high school in 1998, her junior year.

"I was into alcohol, and I was suspended from school in April, so I never went back for my senior year," said Graves, of Ponemah, Minn. "And the following September I just stayed home."

With a high school drop-out rate among the highest in the state, there are plenty of people like Graves on the Red Lake Indian Reservation. More than half of the tribe's adults are unemployed.

But a program called New Beginnings is showing promise at luring unemployed tribal members back in the classroom. It aims to prepare them for the workforce, and then ultimately provide transportation to get them to job sites off the reservation."

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Tribal members back in classroom for skills, jobs (Minnesota Public Radio 2/1)

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