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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)


Is the Capital Guardian Youth ChalleNGe Academy a GED program?

No, As part of the Academic Excellence Component, cadets receive support in preparing for and taking the Official GED Test while enrolled; however taking and/or passing the GED Test is not one of the 8 Core Components required to complete the program.


Do all students earn their high school equivalency diploma while in residence?

During the 5 month Residential Phase students attend daily classes with certified instructors and work at their own pace to improve their math and reading skills in order to increase their individual grade level. Those students who meet state eligibility requirements are provided the opportunity to test for their high school equivalency diploma.


Will I receive a GED Certificate or a High School Diploma?

You will be receive a District of Columbia High School Diploma upon passing the GED Test. (Click Here to See a Sample)


Are graduates obligated to join the military?

No. Although YCP is administered by The District of Columbia National Guard, students are not required to join the military. All students take the ASVAB, and interested graduates that meet specific eligibility qualifications and requirements may enlist in the military branch of their choice.


Is there a cost to the parent or legal guardian?

No, Parents/Guardians do not pay tuition, room or boarding costs associated with the program. The Academy enrollment is free.


What ages do you accept?

Applicants must be at least 16 years old, and no older than 18 at the start of the selected class.


Is the parent or legal guardian’s employment salary a disqualification for the applicant’s enrollment?

No, the parent or legal guardian’s employment salary is not a factor for the applicant’s enrollment qualification process.


Can 15 year olds apply?

Yes, Youth that are 15, turning 16 before the selected class start date can apply.


Can the cadet write or receive mail?

Yes, your cadet can receive mail, and is encouraged to write home.


When can the cadet have family visitation?

Approximately eight weeks and again around week twelve we have Family Days where you are invited to come visit your Cadet on-site for a day. One of these days there will be a Parent/Teacher conference for you to get a detailed update on your Cadet and how they are doing in all eight core components. There will also be a Home Visit scheduled towards the end of the cycle to allow the Cadet to visit home and initiate the goals they have set for after graduation; for example applying for jobs and submitting resumes.


Phone calls… Can I call my cadet? Can the cadet call me?

No, you may not call your cadet directly. You must call your cadet’s assigned counselor to address any concerns or issues. Your cadet will be given the opportunity to make phone calls beginning the end of the second week.


Medical Mission

The Mission of the Medical Section at the Capital Guardian Youth ChalleNGe Academy is to ensure that all cadets remain healthy while in residence. This mission is met by providing daily sick call, distribution of physician prescribed medications, weekly barracks inspections and adherence to the core competency of Health & Hygiene. The Health & Hygiene core competency consists of classes and briefings on hygiene, substance abuse awareness and prevention, nutrition and safe lifestyle choices.


Frequently Asked Medical Questions


My child takes medication for ASTHMA, is this disqualifying?

No, asthma is not considered disqualifying for admission into the Academy. Many cadets routinely carry their inhalers and make it successfully through the program. It is the parent’s responsibility to ensure the cadet has sufficient inhaler and other medication to properly treat the cadet’s condition as directed by the cadet’s physician.


What medical conditions are disqualifying?

No medical condition automatically disqualifies any applicant. However, every participant must be able to successfully complete the 8 Core Components, one of which is Physical Fitness.


What happens if my child gets injured while attending the Academy?

All injured cadets are brought to the medical section by Academy staff members where they are assessed and evaluated. Injuries that can be treated within the scope of practice of the medical section are treated and the cadet is returned to their daily activity. Injuries requiring immediate medical attention beyond the scope of care of our medical section are transported to the local civilian hospital. Parents/guardians are notified when a cadet is transported to the local civilian hospital.


Why is a physical required prior to admission to the Academy?

All cadets require a physical examination by a licensed physician to ensure all cadets arrive at the Academy in a healthy state. The rigors of Academy life are many and a healthy cadet has a greater chance of successful completion. Additionally, a physical examination may disclose a previously undiagnosed medical condition which may require special attention or medication. One of the eligibility is that the applicant “Must be physically and mentally capable to complete the program with reasonable accommodations.”


If my child has already received all of their immunizations do they need to get them all over again?

No, You will be required to bring a copy of your child’s current immunization record, verified by the academies medical staff, at the time of in-processing. All immunizations required for admission into District of Columbia schools must be received. Special attention must be given to Hepatitis B, Meningococcal and Varicella as these are all required for admission into the Academy. Your child will not be admitted without a verified copy of their immunization record.


Why do you need copies of my medical/dental/pharmacy insurance cards?

When care is required beyond the scope of practice of the Academy medical facility cadets are transported to the local civilian hospital for treatment. Proof of medical insurance as evidenced by the copy you provide to us assists the treating hospital in providing timely care for your child. All co-pays required by your private insurance remain Parent/Guardian responsibility.


Is CGYCA a treatment facility?

No, CGYCA is a life intervention and dropout reintegration program run through the District of Columbia National Guard. CGYCA is not a therapeutic environment or a treatment facility.