The American Youth Policy Forum (AYPF), working with the National League of Cities’ Institute for Youth, Education, and Families (YEF Institute), planned a series of workshops and field trips to help local leaders learn more about reaching struggling students and out-of-school youth and expanding options and alternatives for high school-aged young people. This project, funded by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, supports the YEF Institute’s work engaging municipal leaders in building cross-system collaborations by providing hands-on professional development activities to mayors and superintendents, their staffs, and other local leaders engaged in efforts to reach young people who have dropped out of school, are out of work, or have been involved in the juvenile justice or foster care systems. This project offered local leaders an opportunity to participate in strategically designed and intensive workshops and field trips during which participants engage in substantive policy discussions with their counterparts in other cities and visit exemplary programs.
Our trip to Philadelphia included the following discussions:
- Overview of Project U-Turn with Jenny Bogoni from Philadelphia Youth Network
Overview of Multiple Pathways Strategy with School District of Philadelphia and key external partners
Building Cross-System Engagement Strategy featuring David Brown, President, Brown Partners, David Fair, Vice President for Community Impact, United Way Southeastern Pennsylvania, Facilitator: Melissa Orner, Philadelphia Youth Network
SCHOOL AND SITE VISITS
Philadelphia Background Material
- Turning it Around: A Collective Effort to Understand and Resolve Philadelphia’s Drop-out Crisis is a companion volume that offers a set of broad-based recommendations and maps out specific actions to be taken by key public and private agencies, parents and young people to accomplish project goals.
- Unfulfilled Promise: The Dimensions and Characteristics of Philadelphia’s Drop-out Crisis, 2000-2005 is a comprehensive research report by Ruth Curran Neild and Robert Balfanz of the Center for Social Organization of Schools at the Johns Hopkins University. The report analyzes data from the Kids Integrated Data System (KIDS), housed at the Cartographic Modeling Lab at the University of Pennsylvania, and provides a detailed picture of when and why Philadelphia’s young people drop out of high school.
- Where are we now? An Update to the Community on the progress of Project U-Turn, November 2007
- AYPF Forum: Philadelphia’s Project U-Turn, Citywide Efforts to Address the Dropout Problem with Paul Vallas, Chief Executive Officer, School District of Philadelphia: Ruth Curran Neild, Research Scientist, Center for Social Organization of Schools at Johns Hopkins University: Courtney Collins-Shapiro, Director, Multiple Pathways to Graduation, School District of Philadelphia and Laura Shubilla, President, Philadelphia Youth Network.
Background Material on Disconnected Youth:
- Connected by 25: Improving the Life Chances of the Country’s Most Vulnerable 14-24 Year Olds
- Beyond City Limits: Cross System Collaboration to Reengage Disconnected Youth
- Education Commission of the States-At-Risk Students and Dropout Prevention
- Leave No Youth Behind: Opportunities for Congress to Reach Disconnected Youth
- Federal, State, and Local Roles Supporting Alternative Education
- Reconnecting Disadvantaged Young Men
- Campaign for Youth
- The Silent Epidemic
Field Trip Handouts
Resources Mentioned During Our Trip:
- Blue Print For Change
- Highlights Data Sharing Child Welfare Agencies and School Districts
- CARTA Evaluation of Philadelphia’s Accelerate High School’s Summary
- School District of Philadelphia Intake Form
- Answering the Project U-Turn Question * (This document will open as a PDF. Once the document is open right click anywhere on the document and click rotate to inhance your viewing.)
Jennifer Brown Lerner
Senior Program Associate
American Youth Policy Forum
1836 Jefferson Place, NW
Washington, DC 20036