YTEC | Youth Treatment & Education Center    
changing lives  building leaders  recovering dreams
    providing a responsible alternative to incarceration  
 
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Youth Treatment and Education Center, formerly Youth Treatment and Education Court (YTEC), was founded in 1997 in response to the prevalence of alcohol and drug abuse within the juvenile justice population. YTEC was created to provide intensive day treatment and diversion services for San Francisco youth on probation and those participating in San Francisco’s Juvenile Drug Court.

1995 - San Francisco begins planning its first Juvenile Drug Court
The Juvenile Drug courts are based on the successful model of Adult Drug Courts, first introduced by Janet Reno as an answer to the failure of incarceration without substance abuse treatment. In Drug Courts, Prosecution and Defense Counsels put aside their traditional adversarial roles and come together to develop and support a plan that is in the best interest of the youth. The Judge is directly involved in that treatment plan, with the youth appearing before the Judge on a regular basis.

The two-year planning process initiated by Supervising Juvenile Court Judge, Ina Levin Gyemant, brought together a wide range of legal, government and community organizations, and included the voices of youth and their families. The result was a unique vision for an alternative to incarceration for drug-involved youth incorporating court-required treatment plans with extensive wrap-around support services.

November 1997 – YTEC – the Juvenile Drug Court begins with treatment services
As a result of this comprehensive planning, a collaborative of government and community organizations launched the “Youth Treatment and Education Court” (YTEC). Youth attended an intensive after-school program five to six days per week, including drug treatment, case management, weekly court appearances, therapy, family support, and numerous other services provided by collaborative partners.

2000 – YTEC expands to include the YTEC Academy, strengthening the treatment/education model
YTEC partners with the San Francisco Unified School District to pilot the YTEC Academy, an on-site alternative High School. YTEC now serves youth full-time from 8.20 to 5.00 with all educational and treatment services under one roof. The school accommodates 20 YTEC students at a given time with the goal of helping them become positive leaders of their communities, to obtain a high school diploma, and to gain the tools and skills needed to complete a college or vocational program. In 2001, five Academy students make the SFUSD honor roll for African American Scholars.

2002 - YTEC pilots the Leadership Program for youth who have “graduated” drug court
To meet the needs of youth that have successfully completed their drug court requirements, but still want to stay connected with the staff, resources and support of YTEC, the Leadership Program is launched. The program includes opportunities for youth to maintain their gains and prevent relapse while further developing their academic, leadership, and life skills. All leadership youth are enrolled in college or vocational training, in addition to acquiring work experience.

2004 - YTEC moves to a new location and expands the Academy
Because of its successful track record, YTEC receives a grant from the SFUSD as a part of the Secondary School Redesign Initiative to begin planning to grow the school. In Fall 2004, YTEC and the Academy move to a new location with the capacity for 50 students at any time and 100 students a year – and with the goal of accommodating 100 students at any time within three years. YTEC expands its School to Work, and School to College programs in partnership with San Francisco State University, and New College.

2005 – a new structure and a new name to reflect YTEC’s expanded role
To reflect the reality of its growth in programs far beyond those required by the drug court, YTEC changes its name to Youth Treatment and Education Center, and obtains independent status as a 501c3 organization with its own Board of Directors. YTEC continues to evolve to accommodate more youth in its successful model and to support the growing dreams and goals of its graduates.

2006– Principals' Center Collaborative opens to expand the model
Because of the success of YTEC's integration of treatment and education, San Francisco decided to expand the Academy to include more youth on probation. San Francisco Superior Court, SF Unified School District, Mayor Gavin Newsom's Office Of Criminal Justice and the Department of Probation joined with YTEC to expand the program at the SFUSD's Principals' Center campus. The collaborative high school now serves over 60 youth with innovative, integrated treatment and course work.