Reengagement in Boston

Since its inception in 2009, Boston Public Schools Re-Engagement Center (REC) has actively recruited out-of-school youth, helping to reduce the districts’ annual dropout rate by 60%.

The Re-Engagement Center operates as a partnership between Boston’s Private Industry Council, Boston Public Schools, and the Youth Transitions Task Force. The collaboration between these entities has led to many notable changes, including a credit recovery program for off-track high school seniors and a new weighted student funding formula that allows funds to follow students into alternative education programming. 

REC staff work with youth to identify their goals, review transcripts, and discuss the best options available to continue their education. Once REC staff make a referral to a specific education program, they continue to support students through phone calls, school visits, and workshops. 

Promising Practices

  • Establishing personal connections through shared experiences: youth watch testimonials from former students who used the Re-Engagement Center to continue their education 
  • The Center provides connections to multiple education pathways beyond schools and alternative programs :
    • Summer Review: an option allowing students to take up to two classes during the summer
    • Online Credit Recovery
    • Twilight (evening) School

2014-2015 Activity 

  • The Boston REC engaged 610 youth and connected 327 to an educational option. 
  • When reengagement activity began in 2005-2006, the annual dropout for youth enrolled in Boston Public Schools was 9.4 perecnt, the annual dropout rate in 2013-2014 decreased to 3.8 percent