The Educational Alternative Outreach Program comprises of 20 centers, which serve students who are outside the mainstream of the traditional school program. The number of students enrolled in the Outreach Program fluctuates, but averages approximately 1,200. A standard academic program is provided in each center, with the emphasis on the basic skills. Other subject areas include pre-vocational classes, art, physical education, exceptional student education, and services to English Language Learners.
The 20 centers in the Outreach Program are composed of four major types: DJJ residential and day treatment centers, drug/alcohol rehabilitation centers, alternative programs, and shelters. Referrals to, or placement in these programs is based on the students’ school adjustment problems, substance abuse, being a runaway and/or dependent, removal from the alternative school, adjudication by the juvenile court, placement in detention while awaiting adjudication, or expulsion from all regular Miami-Dade County Public Schools and approved for the Work Back Program.
The Miami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS) Educational Alternative Outreach Program provides a vehicle for cooperation between Community-Based Organizations and M-DCPS toward the instruction of alternative education students. Community-Based Organizations are funded through the M-DCPS Educational Alternative Outreach Program at 95% of the FTE per school year. Some Community-Based Organizations collaborate with the Department of Juvenile Justice and M-DCPS as mandated by the State of Florida to provide educational services to adjudicated youth. Other community-based programs collaborate with the M-DCPS Work Back program as part of the dropout prevention initiatives for keeping students in school during expulsion periods. Still, other Community-Based Organizations provide students new to our country and culture educational and support services.