Disconnected Youth Change Network
The Disconnected Youth Change Network (DYCN) consists of community-based organizations, government agencies, funders, and alternative and adult learning institutions dedicated to creating and providing reengagement opportunities for youth who are not currently enrolled in an education or training program.
DYCN members provided the foundational technical, research, and advocacy support to advance the Deputy Mayor for Education and Office of the State Superintendent of Education's (OSSE's) launch of the District's first youth ReEngagement Center (REC). The DYCN now serves as the external advisory committee to the REC. Staffed with a team of youth specialists and managed by OSSE, the REC is DC’s marquee resource for providing out-of-school youth with opportunities to enroll in education programs and connect to a variety of supportive wraparound services that will help them pursue and complete high school credentials, putting them on the path to future career success.
With the help of the DC Alliance for Youth Advocates, DYCN members have also collectively advocated for policy changes related to the expansion of transportation subsidies and for policies that create more flexible pathways to achieving a high school diploma. Additionally, DYCN members developed a resource guide that catalogs the providers and services in the city that serve disconnected youth.
In partnership with the Youth Employment Change Network, DYCN is now turning its attention to launching a virtual reconnection platform to serve as a companion to the physical ReEngagement Center. This platform will be a critical tool to help on-the-ground partners and families understand the variety of program options available for disengaged youth seeking to reconnect back to successful pathways.
Harnessing the myriad of youth-focused institutions from around the District, DYCN is also launching an effort to define, collect, and analyze valuable data related to one of the city’s most difficult-to-track populations. The ability to clearly define DYCN’s collective impact, highlight and scale effective practices, and collaborate with similar organizations to advance a shared policy agenda will assist DYCN members in achieving their shared goal.