DYS Guiding Principles

At CES, we understand that inequity and injustice are deeply embedded in our society’s political, social, educational, and economic structures and ideologies. These oppressions, based on socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, education level, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, age, and ability, serve to deny us all human dignity, preventing the harmonious integration and inclusion of diverse groups, blocking the self-determination of those historically targeted by discrimination, and maintaining social and economic disparity. 

Home E Children/Youth/Families E DYS E Guiding Principles

In light of this understanding

and with an unwavering belief that everyone is a learner, we embrace a personalized, learner-centered approach to education that embodies the DYS Guiding Principles below. You can download a PDF copy of the Guiding Principles by clicking the image below.

College, Career, and Civic Readiness

College and Career

  • Youth benefit from inquiry-based, authentic, hands-on, and relevant learning experiences that enable them to develop and apply critical thinking and problem-solving skills, propelling them to explore and transfer knowledge to real-world contexts.
  • Youth benefit from opportunities to develop 21st-century learning, literacy, and life skills such as creativity, collaboration, and communication; information, media, and technology literacy; flexibility, leadership, initiative, and productivity.
  • Youth benefit themselves and their communities when they attain the knowledge, strategies, experience, and public spirit to pursue meaningful civic engagement.

Culture and Purpose

Culture and Purpose

  • Youth learn in classrooms where joy, creativity, and compassion are evident; their voices are valued and identities are affirmed; and dignity, safety, and respect is fostered by all.
  • Youth experience programming that acknowledges and validates their personal narratives while bringing possible and previously unimagined futures (personal, professional, and social) into their view.

Social Justice and Equity

Social Justice and Equity

  • Youth have opportunities to contribute and develop their whole selves with educators who design validating, individualized, differentiated, and personalized educational experiences.
  • Youth engage in critical discussions about power and privilege, facilitated by educators who consistently seek to decolonize the educational experience, cultivating in and with youth the tools and mindsets to critically consider the world as it is and act to change it.
  • Youth are supported by educators in becoming changemakers beyond the classroom walls.
  • Youth see themselves reflected in the curriculum and collaborate with educators to co-create meaningful, relevant, and self-directed learning experiences that embrace their personal, social, and cultural identities.
  • Youth have equitable access to quality education including higher education, technical skills training, and career counseling.

Regional Excellence in Education Awards

We honor those educators across the DYS workforce who embody one or more of the Guiding Principles including: College, Career, and Civic Readiness; Culture and Purpose; and Social Justice and Equity, central to the organization’s mission to improve the academic and life outcomes for the youth they serve.

On the right, you’ll find each month’s award recipients, along with links to learn more about each educator.

“I celebrate our colleagues for the positive impact they have on everything we do, most especially, their students.” — Woody Clift, Director of DYS Education Initiative

October 2021 Awards

Click to learn more about our educators.

  • Danielle Maco, Western
  • Katie Vadenais, Central
  • Mindy Nguyen, Northeast
  • Samia Peterson, Metro
  • Pedro Elias, Southeast
November 2021 Awards

Click to learn more about our educators.

  • Jennifer Graves, Central
  • Jessica Brueshaber, Western
  • Diana Klimas, Metro
  • Rhonda Fears, Northeast
  • Marianne Pina, Southeast
December 2021 Awards

Click to learn more about our educators.

  • Ronald Perrott, Western
  • Nathan Henner, Southeast
  • Roger Solomon, Central
  • Terry Branch, Metro
January 2022 Awards

Click to learn more about our educators.

  • Bethany Boulanger, Northeast
  • Erin Silverman, Metro
  • Jane Chick, Central
  • Kris Souza, Southeast
  • Tracy Lyon, Western
February 2022 Awards

Click to read more about our educators.

  • Erin White, Western
  • Gopesh Pandy, Central
  • Tommy Cosgrove, Metro
  • Emmanouella Vendouri, Northeast
March 2022 Awards

Click to read more about our educators.

  • John Cady, Southeast
  • Debbie Gorsky, Metro
  • Dan Robichaud, Central
  • Michael Roblinski, Western
  • Sharyn Chamberlain, Northeast
April 2022 Awards

Click to read more about our educators

  • Melanie Attardo, Southeast
  • Cindy Carvill, Central
  • Sosten Lungu, Western
  • Bill “Mr. T” Travers, Northeast
  • Susan Vinovrski, Metro
May 2022 Awards

Click to read more about our educators

  • Kristin Loiko, Western
  • Alex Lombard, Metro
  • Dawn Perron, Northeast
  • Rebecca Gifford, Southeast
  • Kathy O’Neil, Central
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