The purpose of this study was to examine the relation between participation extracurricular activities and school dropout. Social and classroom engagement were analyzed as possible mediating factors in the relation. Longitudinal data from a study conducted by French, Conrad, and Turner (1995) was used in the analysis, along with extracurricular data collected from school yearbooks. Hierarchal binary logistic regressions were used to assess the effect of participation in five types of extracurricular activities (athletics, fine arts, academic clubs, interest groups, and leadership positions) on school dropout rates as well as to assess the role of engagement in the relation. Participation in athletics emerged as the only significant predictor of school dropout. Social and classroom engagement were found to have significant effects in the relation between participation in athletics and school dropout, but the effect of participation in athletics remained significant also, indicating that participation in athletics has a unique effect on school dropout, independent of engagement.



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