Monday, January 12, 2009

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


Case High sees far fewer dropouts
The Herald News – January 8, 2009
Every school has its share of burdens. And for Joseph Case High School, its dropout rate has always topped the list. But that number plummeted last year to just two students, and school officials say a number of new initiatives are to thank for that fact.

Focus Academy to aid dropouts, expelled students
Battle Creek Enquirer – January 8, 2009
Focus Academy, where classes will commence Jan. 20, will serve 12- to 18-year-olds from the Battle Creek area who have dropped out of or have been expelled from, traditional or alternative schools. Focus Academy students will pay no tuition, and enrollment will be capped at 14 for the first semester to maintain a student-to-teacher ratio of 7-to-1.

RESA offers program to get dropouts, expelled students back in class
The Voice – January 7, 2009
A new program to help dropouts and expelled students in St. Clair County earn their high school diploma through a combination of online and in-person learning is being offered through the St. Clair County Regional Educational Service Agency (RESA).

Juvenile Justice

Changing model for juvenile justice
Tri-City Herald – January 11, 2009
Jacque van Wormer has seen too many kids cycle through the juvenile justice system who could have taken a different path. Intervention is the key, van Wormer said, but at what age do you start? That's one question van Wormer hopes to answer as Benton-Franklin Juvenile Court participates in a national initiative that's addressing the current challenges and concerns in the system to make sure youths are treated fairly and have access to the right services.

Olney resident spearheads new program
Olney Daily Mail – January 9, 2009
Linda Brown is the new project coordinator for the Juvenile Justice Council and will be responsible for keeping the line of communications open between the counties of the 2nd Judicial Circuit. The Juvenile Justice Council is a juvenile-justice improvement program aimed at keeping juveniles who have committed crimes from committing future crimes.

Groups call for juvenile justice reform
Arkansas News – January 9, 2009
Juvenile crime in Arkansas has declined, creating an opportunity for the state’s juvenile justice system to shift its focus away from incarceration and toward community-based treatment, a child advocacy group said Friday. “This is a very opportune time to perhaps catch our breath and look not at how we react but how we can prevent children from entering this system,” said Paul Kelly, the report’s author, at a news conference at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

Foster Care

Teen refuses to let foster-care situation define him
Post-Bulletin – January 10, 2009
A 17-year-old ward of the state sat at a computer in Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich., writing the most important letter of his life. It was a sales pitch to 30 prospective foster care parents in the Rochester Hills, Mich., area. He'd found them by searching through court records and legal documents.

ALABAMA VOICES: Helping children big task
Montgomery Advertiser – January 10, 2009
For more than 16 years, Christian Services for Children in Alabama has been involved in helping to change the face of foster care in the state of Alabama. As a pioneering agency, CSCA joined the state on its cutting edge of serving children and youth in home-like settings while meeting some of their most challenging issues. Currently, CSCA is focusing heavily on recruitment and retention of individuals who possess a special gift for serving children and adolescents with psychological challenges.

Life skills training to help foster youth on the path to independence
Beaumont Enterprise – January 6, 2009
More than 200 foster youth in Southeast Texas and East Texas will learn how to better live an independent adult life through a new program offered by Baptist Child & Family Services. The state awarded a four-year contract to the San Antonio-based organization that will expand their Preparation for Adult Living program to 10 cities in East Texas and Southeast Texas including Beaumont and Jasper.

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