Providing educational support and services beyond the classroom to help students succeed from second grade through college and career.
What We Believe
Our vision is a city where every child’s potential – regardless of zip code, skin color or family status – is unlocked with a post-secondary degree, opening the doors to success in life.
- Every child matters and is equally important.
- The best education combines quality in the classroom with enhanced learning opportunities outside the classroom.
- Every family who needs and wants these opportunities should have guaranteed access.
- Every child deserves a clear, viable path to a post-secondary degree.
Throughout FLOC’s history, we have believed that education provides young people with the tools they need to transform their own lives, their families’ lives, and the community around them. From our founding call to close a city-run warehouse for young wards of the state, to our current continuum of out-of-school time programming, we have been led by our conviction that all young people can be, and deserve to be, full, contributing members of our community, and by the knowledge that we live in a city in which we leave too many young people behind without the tools they need to succeed in school and beyond. With this driving vision, we built our multi-layered approach to supporting and guiding each of our students to successful completion of a postsecondary degree.
However, increasingly we are driven not only by our convictions, but also by the growing data that shows the devastating results of leaving too many of our young people without the skills and knowledge they need to compete in our ever changing, high-tech economy. A recent study by the Center on Education and the Workforce at Georgetown University estimated that by 2020, 65 percent of U.S. jobs will require some form of postsecondary education or training. Yet here in our nation’s capital, barely half of DCPS youth graduate from high school. That shocking statistic only leads to more sobering numbers. According to the DC Alliance for Youth Advocates, there are over 14,000 young people in the District neither enrolled in school nor employed, and less than 42% of 20-24-year-olds in DC have full-time employment. (DC Alliance of Youth Advocates, Youth Workforce Development Issue Brief). In the highest-need Wards of the city, those statistics are even more grim.
Every day, FLOC is changing that statistic by providing opportunities for students to succeed in school, aspire to earn a postsecondary degree, and become contributing members of their communities. Unlike many other youth-serving programs, we provide a continuum of support that guides our students from first grade, through completion of a postsecondary degree. Through our Neighborhood Tutoring Program, we intervene early to make sure that students do not fall further behind in reading or math. Building on those academic skills, our Scholars Program exposes our students to experiences, information and activities that build persistence skills to help them progress through their educational journey and into a chosen career.
We know that getting our students to a postsecondary institution is not enough, so we continue to provide support and mentoring to our students in postsecondary through regular check in’s, distance learning seminars, and professional development workshops held during semester breaks. As a 2011 study by the Lumina Foundation showed, “individuals with a bachelor’s degree now make 84 percent more over a lifetime than those with only a high school diploma, up from 75 percent in 1999.” We want to get all our students to their graduation day, so they can enter adulthood with career options open to them, rather than with doors closed in front of them.