(Washington, DC) – During #DCValues Week, the Bowser Administration and the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services (DYRS) awarded high school diplomas to 16 DYRS students, the largest class of graduates in DYRS history. The ceremonies at the Youth Services Center and New Beginnings Youth Development Center yesterday, recognized youth enrolled in the Maya Angelou Academy for reaching this significant milestone.
The Maya Angelou Academy (MAA) provides schooling to court-involved youth, helping them overcome challenges to learning and building the academic skills necessary for long-term success. MAA serves DYRS youth through its nationally recognized courses and enrichment programs.
“Helping young people overcome obstacles is our passion” said Hilary Cairns, DYRS Director. “Our job is to give these youth the best possible care, and that includes providing them with an educational foundation that sets them up for success after their time with DYRS comes to an end. In addition to the immense value in earning their diploma, these youth also learned the important lesson that hard work can help you achieve any goal you put your mind to.”
Students are proud to reach this landmark in their journey, including one graduate who enrolled in MAA with ninth grade credits. A student who identifies as “Nate” was able to focus on achieving a diploma within 14 months. Using his daughter as motivation, Nate says “I saw a chance and grabbed it.”