Evaluation Director Meghan Mahoney Discusses Positive Youth Development in Secondary Education

Educate!'s Evaluation Director Meghan Mahoney joined a panel hosted by the Society for International Development in Washington, D.C., sharing her insights on secondary education in developing countries and specific strategies for integrating positive youth development in these contexts.

The positive youth development (PYD) approach addresses holistic, developmentally appropriate needs of young people with a focus on building assets. Meghan described how Educate!'s successes in equipping youth with the skills they need to increase their livelihoods and thrive in life after school aligns with the PYD approach.  At the same time, gaps in understanding remain, and the panel discussed both what we know and what we don't know in terms of evidence for this approach, and how Educate! is working to close some of these gaps in the literature through research and evaluation.

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Meghan was joined by other leaders in the field, including Clair Null, Senior Researcher at Mathematica Policy Research, and Betsy Brand, Executive Director of American Youth Policy Forum. The expert panel discussed the challenges and opportunities involved in merging the fields of youth development and education, especially recognizing the burgeoning youth population: by the end of the century, six to seven billion young people will go through secondary school in Africa. Now more than ever, it is critical to ensure that youth receive an education that enables them to succeed - both personally and professionally - in life after school. 

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Photo from Society for International Development - Washington D.C. Chapter.