TA Students are “Getting to Y” with Up for Learning

TA Students are “Getting to Y” with Up for Learning

Thetford Academy middle and high school students have teamed up with Montpelier-based nonprofit Up for Learning to make a difference in our school community.

With support from the Mount Ascutney Prevention Partnership and led by TA’s Student Assistance Provider Kara Toms, two groups of students (a middle school and a high school group) are participating in Up for Learning’s “Getting to Y” program. Getting to Y is a youth leadership program that follows an action research model and is designed to help students bring meaning to their own Youth Risk Behavior Survey data.

Working alongside students from across Vermont, TA students have been analyzing and interpreting the State’s YRBS data from the most recent school year (TA is focusing on Orange County). They will plan and lead a community dialogue event to share ideas, get input, and create preliminary action plans. The end goal is implementation of a final action plan that addresses the root causes–the “Y”–of the top risk behaviors identified in their work.

The Getting to Y program is giving students at TA and in Vermont to take ownership of the challenges facing their own community. “Through youth leadership, partnerships with adults, action research, and peer and community engagement, participants not only experience personal growth and build their capacity for future civic engagement, but also effect sustainable change in youth behavior, community and school culture.”