High school graduation is the single most significant predictor for improving socio-economic status and success. Sadly, homeless youth face numerous barriers to successful completion of high school. The homeless family’s instability leads youth to have poor attendance or be chronically absent from school, which leads to failing courses, being held back from grade to grade and dropping out of school. The emotional impact of homelessness leads homeless students to have more disciplinary issues, which in turn makes them disinclined to enjoy school and learning in general.
Now in its second year, New Horizons is a six-week summer program for homeless youth that helps our local homeless youth to complete their studies and earn a high school diploma. Held in local Frederick County Public School high schools, New Horizons provides academic training and credit recovery each morning, followed by part-time jobs in the afternoon.
Numerous community organizations have come together to develop and support this program including The Community Foundation of Frederick County, Frederick County Public Schools, YMCA of Frederick County, United Way of Frederick County, and Frederick County Workforce Services.