On the other hand, now that I have an actual, live 17-year-old in my house, I feel pretty confident saying that if my 17-year-old didn't want to graduate, there is no way I could make him go to school every day. So it's a good thing he wants to go to college, eh? If he saw no difference in his future whether he graduated or not, if he chose to skip class every day, I guess that I (as parent/guardian) could be prosecuted for contributing to a child's delinquency.
The Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy analyzed the issue and wrote a policy brief, Raise the Age, Lower the Dropout Rate? Considerations for Policy Makers.
The Rennie Center examines the arguments for and against raising the compulsory age of school attendance to 18 [in Massacusetts] and concludes that there is no credible empirical evidence to support this policy alone as an effective strategy to combat the dropout crisis. The Center argues that prior to considering a raise in the compulsory age of attendance, the Commonwealth should focus its energy and resources on developing policies and programs that research has shown to be successful in helping at-risk students stay in school and persist to earning a diploma.