The Youth Development Network, a program of the Boston Public Health Commission believes that all youth can achieve their fullest potential with the support of caring adults. YDN is founded on the research that places education as a social determinate of health and other quality of life issues, especially in marginalized communities. YDN's goal is to reconnect chronically absent youth to their learning and to a network of support. We value each youth for their strengths, identities, families, cultures, and communities as we help them find success as their authentic selves.
The Youth Development Network partners with four BPS high schools to address and reduce chronic absenteeism among students. Our services are completely voluntary to the student and family. With current staffing, YDN serves 200-300 students a year.
To refer a student from one of our participating schools to the YDN Program, please use this Referral Form.
Organize: support school structure around attendance
Identify: develop a system of identifying issues with student attendance
Outreach: meet with parents at home, school or other location
Assess: what are the obstacles to attending school?
Case management: what resources are needed to overcome above?
Mentor: guide and support each student towards success.
“I was referred to YDN program because of my frequent absences and tardiness. YDN program has helped me in many ways, from home visits to meetings after school. It also helped with my grades and kept me in school, YDN program has help me become more social and interactive with others. I recommend this program to anyone who is struggling because it won’t just improve your grades and academics but get you ready for real world and social skills.”
- Jeremiah E. Burke High School Student
Our summer program is a partnership between YDN, BPS and the Division of Youth Engagement & Employment, Boston Centers for Youth & Families (BCYF). This program was created by YDN staff to address tension
between academic and financial needs of students. This is the only summer youth employment program designed for students who have summer school obligations. Workshops are provided by YDN staff and professional guest speakers. These include:
- Communication Skills
- Conflict Resolution
- Healthy Relationships
- Sexual Health
- Substance Abuse
- Financial Literacy
- Legal Rights
- Responsible Social Media
- Job Readiness
- Higher Education
- Successful Study Habits
- Civic Engagement