Reengagement in Minneapolis

We Want You Back began in 2009 as a concerted effort to reengage the almost 9% of Minneapolis Public Schools students who drop out each year, and to assist other young adults living in the city who left school without a diploma identify a pathway to school completion.

We Want You Back (WWYB), a program of Minneapolis Public Schools, supports disconnected youth in Minneapolis who have yet to receive their high school diploma. Two fulltime WWYB staff members assists disengaged students in grades 6 – 12 and up to the age of 21, living in Minneapolis, reenroll in school by providing outreach, assessment, referral, and support in completing diploma requirements. The cornerstone of the work is personalized and sustained support.

WWYB also assists former MPS students above the age of 21 who left school without a diploma. At WWYB, these older students may receive credit recovery support for high school diploma completion or be referred to local adult basic education programs where they can attain their GED or Adult Diploma.

Promising Practices

  • The WWYB program uses the methodology of the evidenced-based Check & Connect program, which originated in Minneapolis Public Schools. Check & Connect is a comprehensive intervention designed to enhance student engagement at school and with learning for marginalized, disengaged students in grades K-12, through relationship building, problem solving and capacity building, and persistence.
  • WWYB provides a caring adult connection and academic support to students until they obtain their High School diploma.

2015-2016 Activity

  • During the 2015-2016 school year, WWYB reached out to 889 former students. 503 of these youth completed initial processing and 445 re-enrolled in a MPS school.  For another 213, WWYB received verification as to enrollment in another school district, 26 enrolled in a GED program, 32 enrolled in an Adult Education Program, and 102 completed their high school diploma requirements with WWYB Credit Recovery support and graduated.