Saying YESS to better participant outcomes

New programming initiative is another move towards evidence-based success

With a long-term goal of saying yes to more consistent, positive outcomes, the Board of Child Care’s Baltimore and Denton campuses have embarked upon the YESS programming platform.

YESS stands for Youth Engagement Success System. The core components of the YESS platform are Respectful, Responsible, Safe and Self. The program teaches good decision-making skills, deters negative behaviors and pushes program participants to work toward unity and personal goals through choice-making challenges.

The four core components are broken down around how they relate to treatment, the community, education and workplaces, and family support systems. BCC staff, who embody the acronym for the role model, engagement, professional and safety (REPS), administer the YESS system. The REPS are responsibilities for teaching, addressing, correcting and reinforcing positive behavior with residents.

Residents in the program receive privileges related to a given category, and there are certain things a youth can have based on where they are in the program. As choices are made by residents as to what they are to participate in on the unit, there are rewards or consequences for some choices, and these are based on what a natural consequence would be in life for certain behaviors.

Rewards outstrip consequences, but for a certain category of offenses, REPS have a pool of consequences at their disposal created from logical, natural outcomes. In rare cases, enacting an extended safety plan beyond the pool of consequences is available when safety demands it.

By being able to choose how involved they want to be in the program, the residents can control their outcomes on a micro level, leading to more control on a macro level, too. BCC will collect data over the next year to chart outcomes for participants engaging in the YESS Program.


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