Early last fall, as the pandemic lingered on, we were brainstorming how to set the stage for a new, better-than-ever school year and we came up with the 100 Diploma Challenge. One hundred graduates in one year would be unprecedented; recent previous yearly totals ranged from 75-81. The pandemic took a big toll on student engagement, and we were eager to help our students bounce back and have a stellar year.
Frankly, we were off to a slow start. We normally see a number of graduates by mid-year in December, but this school year there were only fourteen. The 100 Diploma Challenge was starting to look like an impossible dream.
That’s where a wonderful group of motivated students, D2 Center staff, and OPS teachers and staff came in. Our students had a very strong spring and summer, and our final results for the 2021-22 year were:
88 YAN Program Graduates + 32 Reengagement Program Graduates = 120 Graduates! *
This milestone could not have been accomplished without:
- Determined high school seniors, some of whom were working, parenting, and/or struggling with other issues while they completed their diploma
- Committed D2 Center YANs, Career Navigators, Staff Specialist, and part-time teachers
- Dedicated OPS teachers and staff, from guidance counselors and social workers to teachers and administrators
- Supportive family, friends, and community partners whom our students could count on
A huge thank you to everyone in the community who supports our work and who understands the importance of education – and specifically a high school diploma – as a major steppingstone on the pathway to a successful future.
Here’s to another great year in 2022-23!
* Numbers reflect the school year running from August 21, 2021 to July 22, 2022