Teen Outreach Program (TOP)

The primary objective of TOP is to provide school-based intervention for students in grades 9-12. This program is a nationally replicated youth development approach aimed at preventing primary teen pregnancy and helping young people make consistent progress in school.

Touchstones of TOP:

  • Encouraging adults to value young people as assets and resources;
  • Building strong community-wide partnerships that promote broad-based community involvement to insure program continuity;
  • Learner-centered education for participants; and
  • Connecting service-learning opportunities to the classroom-based curriculum and vice versa through built-in academic extensions.

Program Components:

  • Community Service,
  • Classroom-Based Activities, and
  • Service-Learning.

Segments of TOP:

  • Level 1 is designed for youth ages 12-13. Young people at this age are entering puberty – experiencing changes in their physical, emotional, intellectual, and social development. They are often overwhelmed by new emotions and body changes and have a greater interest in physical activities and creative expression than older teens. “Changing Scenes” takes into account the developmental needs of this age group as well as the five developmental tasks all teens engage in at the level at which 12-13 year olds express independence, identity, integrity/morality, and intellectual capacity.
  • Level 2 is designed for 14-year old youth. These young people are experiencing their first love, searching for their own identity and confronting new peer pressures. Therefore, emphasis in this curriculum level is placed on self-awareness, dealing with emotions, accepting responsibility, and decision making. It engages participants in activities that allow them to recognize their own growth and development and encourage them to take on leadership roles.
  • Level 3 is designed for youth ages 15-16. While teens at this stage tend to demonstrate individual variation, some behaving like young adults while others remaining more similar to adolescents, as a group they have different needs and are working on different developmental tasks than their younger counterparts. The Level 3 curriculum focuses on problem-solving and encourages youth to play an active role in defining and directing their own learning experiences. They greatly value information they can apply to their own lives at this age so they are given a wide variety of learning options and opportunities to evaluate their own learning.
  • Level 4 is designed for 17-19 year olds. At this stage the program focuses heavily on fostering youth leadership and bringing to bear community resources in support of learning experiences. Youth are directly involved in the planning and delivery of sessions to help strengthen their ability to take control of their own lives as they transition into early adulthood

Afterschool mentoring:

  • Homework help
  • Group sessions
  • Career day
  • Service learning