(YESS Program - Youth Educational Support Specialists)
SOAR’s educational services meet our youth wherever support is needed. The Youth Educational Support Specialist’s (YESS) act as a liaison between the youth and the school, connecting and collaborating with school professionals who can positively impact the youth's needs during school hours.
SOAR’s Education Support serves the youth and their family as a whole in relation to academic success. SOAR recognizes that individual subject support, coping skills, connections within their school, and using techniques to help the youth feel motivated are all pieces to guide youth toward academic success. The paired team member works alongside SOAR clients and families to provide assistance in navigating different aspects of technology and education in regard to accessing and completing school work. The team member functions as supplementation to classroom teaching, as well as a liaison between school professionals and the youth and their family. Services are provided in-person and/or virtually, as designed for what is best for the youth and family.
Youth will learn vital skills and lessons that they are able to apply after graduating from SOAR programming, such as fostering connections and resources within their school and advocating for their academic success and mental health support. Students receive the needed support in order to be successful in academics. Students also receive support in navigating virtual platforms and the transition between virtual and in-person school, as needed.
Of the 220+ youth SOAR has served in 2020, approximately 50% of those youth were referred specifically for aspects of educational support. Currently, 83% of youth in SOAR programming receive educational support, demonstrating the success and interest in our educational programming since implementing YESS.