Urgent Advocacy Alert: Call Your Policymakers to Restore Funding to YPP!

Why We Need Your Help in Advocating for the Young Parent Alternative Education Program

During this past year, the Young Parent Alternative Education Program (YPP) sustained a devastating funding cut of 33%, which has led to a crisis in access to alternative education for young parents in Massachusetts. The Alliance, in partnership with YPPs across the state, is in the midst of an intensive campaign to restore funding to YPP.

The Governor has recently informed the media that he plans to file a supplemental budget by the end of the year. We need to ensure that a restoration of funding for YPP is included in this budget! Given the looming $2 Billion budget deficit in Fiscal Year 2012, the supplemental budget is our last opportunity to restore funding to this important program, so we need as many people to make calls as possible.

What You Can Do Now

Take a few minutes during the next week to call your legislators, so that they understand the importance of restoring funding to YPP. We need to ensure that no young parents who want to further their education are denied this opportunity.You can find your Senator and Representatives and their contact information here: www.wheredoivotema.com. Governor Patrick can be reached at 888.870.7770. Below is a script and talking points for your calls, as well as more information about the YPP program.

Why is the Young Parent Alterantive Education Program so Important?

In Massachusetts, the Young Parent Alternative Education Program (YPP) provides the only state funded alternative education program specifically for young parents. Through the Promise Project, we know that young parents are often highly motivated to further their education, but that they also face significant barriers to remaining in school. YPP provides the necessary supports that these often overlooked students need to attain educational success, and serves as a valuable resource for teen parents to receive education leading to a high school diploma or GED, job skills training, job placement assistance, as well as access to parenting classes, counseling and family planning. For many young parents, YPP is the program that makes future success possible. To hear what young parents have to say about the importance of YPP, please check out these short videos from: Yasmin, Linda, Jennyfer, Omaila, and Maxiel.

-Script-

Hi, my name is ____________, and I am calling from _________________(city/town) to urge Representative/Senator/Governor ____________to allocate $2 million to the Young Parent Alternative Education Program (YPP) in the supplemental budget being discussed.  YPPs were devastated from a 33% reduction in fiscal year 2011 funding, causing a young parent alternative education crisis in Massachusetts.  Please restore $2 million in funding to line item DTA 4401-1000.  I urge you to restore funding to this critical education program now and avoid the associated costs of increased dropout rates later. Thank you.

-Talking Points-

What we are asking for: That legislators restore $2 million in funding to the Young Parent Alternative Education Program (YPP)

    • YPP is effective: 98% of YPP students attain a GED or high school diploma, enter skills training or gain employment, pursue post-secondary education and/or advance 2 grade levels each year [1].
    • Attaining a GED or high school diploma reduces the risk of subsequent teen pregnancy. Second teen births have been linked to decreases in economic self-sufficiency and education among teen mothers and poorer medical outcomes for teen mothers and their babies [2].
    •  YPP improves outcomes for children of teen parents: Maternal education is a key predictor of a child’s academic success [3].

    [1] Department of Transitional Assistance, Fiscal Year 2010 outcomes data

    [2] Manlove J, Mariner C, & Papillo AR, Subsequent fertility among teen mothers: Longitudinal analyses of recent national data, Journal of Marriage and Family, 2000, 62(2): 430-448; Lorraine V Klerman , Another chance: preventing additional births to teen mothers. Washington, DC: The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, 2004.

    [3]The National Campaign to Prevent Teen & Unplanned Pregnancy, Why it matters: Teen Pregnancy and Education; Magnuson, K.A. & McGroder, S. M. Northwestern University & Child Trends (2008)The effect of increasing welfare mothers’ education on their young children’s academic problems and school readiness.#1f497d“>