Jennifer Lawrence Is a Middle School Dropout—'I am Self-Educated'

Growing up in Hollywood has its downside, especially for the young actors and musicians. There are several stories about the things that young celebrities may struggle with to become what they feel is their life’s path.  For instance, some child stars may be more likely to use drugs and alcohol. They may have family troubles. Even something as simple as school can become less important to child stars than their careers, as was the case with Jennifer Lawrence.

Why drop out of school?

Child stars may drop out of school for a variety of reasons. Ultimately it is because they simply do not feel that they belong there. Many say that they were never good with their studies. Some were moved from one part of the world to another to pursue their careers and simply never enrolled at their new schools.

Then, in the case of Drew Barrymore, who first gained notice after being in the movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial at age 7.  She dropped out of school after getting emancipated from her parents at the young age of 14.

Barrymore isn’t the only star to drop out of school due to family troubles. For one reason or another, there are many known cases of child stars that sued their parents.

Some of today’s biggest names never finished school

As shown on Insider, some of our favorite actors and actresses reached for success early in life. They each did it for a variety of reasons. Some felt the need to help their family. Others may have just felt that they could be more successful taking a path that wasn’t school.

Jennifer Lawrence, star of The Hunger Games and many other movies, dropped out at 14 as well. When asked by Bill Whitaker at 60 Minutes, “Did you finish up high school?” She replied, “I dropped out of middle school. I don’t technically have a GED or a diploma.  I am self-educated.” She goes on to say that she didn’t feel that she was good at school anyway. 

Actor Patrick Dempsey dropped out of school to become a juggler and a magician, which eventually led him to theater and movies. His first hits were in the 80s with Can’t Buy Me Love, among others. Dempsey is most known today for his role on Grey’s Anatomy where he played Derek Shepherd, a fact that would give him both a high school diploma and an honorary doctorate in the same weekend.

Rihanna was 16 when she left school. She left to move from Barbados to try and get a record deal in the U.S. She isn’t alone. Other successful musicians also stepped back from school at a young age. To name just a few, we have Elton John, Eminem, and Avril Lavigne. It was once believed that Britney Spears dropped out, but it turns out she did finish school.

Daniel Radcliffe was perhaps the youngest at just 11-years when he quit school. It happened when he became Harry Potter, which kept him busy for nearly a decade. What started as a break has lasted well into adulthood.

How many celebs complete school after finding success?

Some child stars who drop out of school, do eventually finish by attaining their GED. Katy Perry and Charlie Sheen have both received it. For Sheen, it took about 30 years to get back to it.

Jim Carrey, who quit school at the age of 16 to support his family returned to get his GED. Christina Applegate, Michael J. Fox, Nicholas Cage, Johnny Depp, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Leonardo DiCaprio, and many more all left school to return just a little more prepared for life than they were as a child. Even

For many stars though, like Lawrence and Keanu Reeves, their success seems to be the only education that they need.

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