The Massachusetts Department of Youth Services is a multi-faceted agency that serves youth committed as juvenile delinquents or youthful offenders.

The Department employs a "continuum" model of services and supervision. All DYS programs address the educational, psychological and health needs of each youth in its custody.

DYS operates (as of July 2016) 50 residential programs, ranging from staff secure programs to hardware secure programs and 22 district offices that are strategically located across Massachusetts to provide the supervision and support to the DYS committed population who are living in their home communities.

DYS divides the state geographically into five regions.  Each region has its own continuum of services and supervision.  The goal is to serve youth as close to their home communities and families as possible.

To learn more about our program and services provided by the Department of Youth Services, please visit Juvenile Justice Programs and Services


As the juvenile justice agency for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Department of Youth Services promotes positive change in the youth in our care and custody. Our mission is to make communities safer by improving the life outcomes for youth in our care.  We achieve our mission through investing in highly qualified staff and a service continuum that engages youth, families and communities in strategies that support positive youth development.


Every young person served by the Department of Youth Services (DYS) will become a valued, productive member of their community and lead a fulfilling life.


  • We are unwavering and persistent in the pursuit of the positive development of youth in our care.
  • We promote safer communities by providing prevention, intervention and rehabilitation services.
  • We actively engage and support youth, families and communities as our partners.
  • We actively support a safe and healthy environment for our diversified and highly skilled workforce.
  • We work collaboratively with our public and private partners.
  • We adhere to the highest ethical and professional standards in all our work.
  • We respect and embrace diversity.


  1. Ensure the “right youth, is in the right place, for the right reasons” through juvenile justice reform strategies that engage public, private, community and family partners.
  2. Improve youth success through a continuum of services based on the science of adolescent development and proven and promising practices in juvenile justice.
  3. Youth sustain the gains they made while in DYS custody through improved discharge planning   and continuing community supportive partnerships.
  4. Develop and focus DYS’ human, physical and organizational capacity necessary to execute the various strategies to efficiently and effectively achieve the agency’s operational goals and, ultimately, its stated mission.

This information is provided by the Department of Youth Services.