Monday, March 30, 2009

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


Exeter High School drop out rate declines, Exeter, NH – March 27, 2009
Schools across the state, including SAU 16, are lowering their dropout rates. Numbers released Wednesday, March 25, showed the state's four-year cumulative dropout rate has fallen 3.8 percent in six years. Superintendent Michael Morgan said SAU 16 showed a 1.1 percent decline in the four-year cumulative rate. Morgan said it's a tribute to voters and employees who strive to offer a variety of educational opportunities to each student.

Engaging high-school dropouts
Independent Record, Helena, MT – March 26, 2009
After trying to attend each of Helena’s public high schools without success, 19-year-old Christina Becker is now on a path to earn her high school diploma — this time at the University of MontananHelena. “(The high schools) are very different, but all have the same teaching methods,” Becker said. “I have a problem reading out of a book and learning. The structure of the college environment is very helpful.”

A drop in dropouts: Statewide, schools are seeing improvements
Foster’s Daily Democrat, Dover, NH – March 26, 2009
It seems efforts by school districts to provide students with alternate educational options and opportunities has been effective in lowering the dropout rate statewide. The state Department of Education released a statement Wednesday that high schools have shown steady improvement in dropout rates, going from a four-year cumulative dropout rate of 15.1 percent in 2001-2002 to 11.3 percent now. "Through hard work, schools have made great progress," said Commissioner Lyonel Tracy in the DOE press release.

Juvenile Justice

Keeping an eye on at-risk youths
Daily News, Los Angeles, CA – March 27, 2009
Probation officers will be stationed at four schools in some of the San Fernando Valley's most troubled areas as part of a pilot program to keep at-risk kids out of the juvenile justice system, officials announced Friday. The Los Angeles County Probation Department will place full-time officers at Birmingham High School in Van Nuys, Panorama High School in Panorama City, Kennedy High School in Granada Hills, and Maclay Middle School in Pacoima. The officers will focus on kids ages 13 to 18 who appear at-risk for criminal activity, working with the children and their families to keep them out of trouble.

Juveniles' justice
Palo Alto Online, Palo Alto, CA – March 27, 2009
Members of East Palo Alto Youth Court practiced their skills Thursday at a mock trial presided over by Judge LaDoris Cordell at East Palo Alto City Hall. Youth Court is an alternative to the juvenile-justice system.

Youth diversion programs defended in Laconia
The Citizen of Laconia, Belknap County, NH – March 27, 2009
Alan Robichaud, director of the Belknap County Citizens Council on Children and Families, defended restorative justice programs to local Rotarians on Thursday, telling them it is more economical to help juvenile offenders before they reach the courts than after. This week's guest to the Laconia Rotary Club, Robichaud said Laconia was very fortunate to have a close-knit community where "people support the idea of community justice" performed with "dignity and respect."

Foster Care

Year Up students learn business and life skills
San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco, CA – March 29, 2009
Not long ago, Beaunca Wilson passed her time hanging out with drug dealers and users, feeling like she had no plans and even fewer options. Today, the 20-year-old single mom, a former foster youth who lives in Oakland, has traded her sweats for business attire and is spending her days learning how to use Excel spreadsheets and network at events.

Philanthropist Doris Buffett Gives $150,000 Challenge Grant to Hearts & Homes for Youth - Area Non-Profit Serving At-Risk Youth
Fox Business, Silver Spring, MD – March 26, 2009
Hearts & Homes for Youth, the Maryland non-profit organization serving troubled and at-risk youth will host a special luncheon featuring philanthropist Doris Buffett, founder of the Sunshine Lady Foundation and sister of billionaire investor Warren E. Buffett on Friday, March 27. Ms. Buffett believes that each of her grants is considered an "investment and a call to action for individuals to do their part to help change lives." The entire $300,000 donation will go towards enhancing Hearts & Homes' multitude of programs and services.

New center calls out for foster teens
Sonoma Valley Sun, Sonoma, CA – March 27, 2009
One day the teenager is in a foster home with meals and a place to sleep, a sense of security and belonging. The next day, an 18th birthday, it’s all gone. The framework of county assistance disappears and the youth is legally emancipated, “aged out” of the system. Beginning April 2, with the opening of Sonoma V.O.I.C.E.S. in Santa Rosa, foster teens will have a place to turn for help and advice. Voicing Our Independent Choices for Emancipation Support brings support services all under one roof for the first time in Sonoma County. The one-stop community center will be staffed by experts – eight recently emancipated foster youth, ages 18 to 22.

No comments: