The Alabama Department of Youth Services School District
In 1973, the state of Alabama established The Alabama Department of Youth Services. Its task is to create a comprehensive program that will guide delinquent youths of the state to rehabilitation. The school district was created in 1983. Thus, the Alabama Department of Youth Services became The Alabama Department of Youth Services School District. Under this new department, all educational programs created by the old department will be under its supervision. As a result, three delinquent youth institutions were absorbed by the new department. These are the Alabama Boys Industrial School at Birmingham and in Mt. Meigs, and the Alabama State Training School for Girls.
Vision and Mission of Alabama's DYS
The Alabama Department of Youth Services School District (DYS) envisions that success can be experienced through the help of an environment educational and promote good values such as life long learning, community, family and good character. In order to achieve this vision, they need to prepare and equip the youth/students through discipline and proper formal education.
Beliefs of Alabama's DYS
The DYS further believes that, everybody in the community must help participate in creating a better environment, be fair and just, treat others with respect, be responsible, be patient and understanding, admit own mistakes, develop self-esteem, and the learning environment must be orderly, safe as well as secure. These beliefs act as their foundation in helping the delinquent youths become a better person and be prepared for the real world.
Programs of DYS
Aside from values education, other programs include skills development. It is through skills development programs that these delinquent youths are profiting. The DYS understands that some of these youth offenders do not have the access to proper and formal education. As a response, they designed programs that will enhance the skills of a student so that when she/he finishes the program, she/he will have job opportunities.
Some of the created programs were specialized by institutions and some runs generally. The programs run by these institutions are majorly categorized into two: short term and long term programs. Youth offenders are evaluated and a proper program is given. The program continuously runs until such time that the student is ready to go back and start a new life.
Facilities of DYS
Today, the DYS supervises more than three facilities. The following facilities are: Autauga Campus, Chalkville Campus, Mobile Group Home, Mt. Meigs Campus, Thomasville Campus and Vacca Campus. Each institution caters to different types of youth offenders.
Chalkville Campus is located at P.O. Box 9486, Birmingham, Alabama. Their main focus is to help rehabilitate girls usually from 12-18 years old. Some of their programs include, physical education, sex education, campus service projects, general education (GED) preparation, group counseling, drug and alcohol education. They also provide social skills training, value clarification, assertiveness training and medical services. Recently, the Chemical Addiction Program (CAP) was created to strengthen alcohol and drug rehabilitation.
Mt. Meigs Campus is located at P.O. Box 66, 1000 Industrial School Road, Mt. Meigs, Alabama. The campus has 13 dormitories that can hold a total number of 312 delinquent youths. They admit children of up to 21 years old. The campus offers programs that focus on medical, vocational and academic education, psychological services, chronic behavior, assessment as well as treatment for sex offenders and the CAP.
Thomasville Campus is located at P.O. Box 695, 2109 Bashi Road Building 509 Thomasville, Alabama. This campus specializes in offering short term programs for delinquent youths. The programs usually run up to 28 days. The student can be released from the service once he finishes the program.
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