I have a question for those that say either we don't let them drop out till 18 or until they are signed up for a trade school or something.
If the kid has decided he doesn't want to be there and is done learning what possible good is it doing just makinging him sit in class. You can't make him pay attention you can't make him do homework and you can't even really stop him from acting out.
Now you have a kid that is wasting the teacher and everybody else's time while not learning anything. If someone really wants to screw up there life you can't stop them. Chances are later in life while they are working a dead end job making minimum wage they will regret that decision but that is life.
It is not the governments job to protect people from themselves.