Monday, March 26, 2012

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


AT&T's $250 Million Plan to Reduce High School Dropouts
Business Week, Washington, DC – March 19, 2012
As educators, policy makers, and other leaders gathered in Washington on Monday for the Building a Grad Nation Summit, it’s no surprise that one of the first people they heard from was AT&T Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Randall Stephenson.

Committee vote set on raising school dropout age
Wicked Local, Norwell, MA – March 22, 2012
A legislative committee is poised to advance legislation that will raise the state’s minimum high school dropout age to 18 in time for the 2014-2015 school year, an effort that backers say will help chip away at the 8,000 students per year who quit school and disproportionately wind up in prison or dependent upon taxpayer-funded programs.

High school graduation rates up 3.5% since 2001
Herald Times Reporter, South Hagerstown, MD – March 19, 2012
The last straw for 17-year-old Alton Burke was a note left on his door. The high school dropout picked up the phone and re-enrolled at South Hagerstown High in Maryland.

Juvenile Justice

Supreme Court Revisits Issue of Harsh Sentences for Juveniles
The New York Times, Washington, DC – March 20, 2012
At a pair of Supreme Court arguments on Tuesday, the justices returned to the question of what the Constitution has to say about harsh sentences imposed on juvenile offenders.

Police, court train on youth issues
The Register-Herald, West Virginia – March 22, 2012
Law enforcement officers from across the state have gathered at the National Mine Health and Safety Academy for advanced training in dealing with youths.

Foster Care

Cash assistance for Florida's former foster children continues unchanged, Tallahassee, FL – March 21, 2012
The idea to scale back Florida's cash assistance for former foster children is dead this year, but so are the reforms proposed for the Road to Independence Program.

CASA makes plans for kids after foster program
KHAS TV, Nebraska – March 19, 2012
Each year, dozens of teens age out of the state's foster care system when they turn 19 and go off to live on their own. Many of them are unprepared for life after leaving the foster care system.  The program is being created by CASA of South Central Nebraska.
Their goal is to reach out to kids who age out of the foster care system and provide them with services they need to become productive citizens in the community.

Teen Pregnancy

Teen birth rate drops in California
Los Angeles Times, California – 20, 2012
The rate of teenagers having babies in California hit a record low in 2010, the state Department of Public Health announced Tuesday.

Youth pregnancy prevention and education program opens drop-in center
South Coast Today, New Bedford, MA – March 24, 2012
A program that educates SouthCoast teenagers and middle schoolers about pregnancy, prevention and parenting has set up house on Ashley Boulevard, where it now offers an after-school drop-in center for area youth.

Monday, March 19, 2012

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


SC improves its high school dropout rates
Post Crescent, Columbia, SC - March 18, 2012
A report by a national think tank has found South Carolina's high school graduation rates have sharply increased since 2002.

Proposal would raise state school dropout age to 18
The Herald News, Fall River, MA – March 11, 2012
Area legislators and school officials support the idea of raising the minimum school dropout age from 16 to 18, but there are concerns with how the plan would be funded and implemented.

Nashville school district sees decline in dropout rate
The Tennessean, Nashville, TN – March 18, 2012
The message is scribbled in black marker on a dry erase board in a Metro Nashville school, written by a student more than two years ago and never erased.  “I will always be back to visit you, to show you where my life has gone, because without you I would still be a high school dropout.”

Juvenile Justice

At D.C. Superior Court program, a focus on helping minors with mental health problems
The Washington Post, Washington, D.C. – March 15, 2012
JM-4 in D.C. Superior Court isn’t your typical courtroom.  No one is on trial. Defendants, called “respondents,” are surrounded by social workers, psychologists and, often, family members. There’s no mention of the criminal charges against them.

Study praises juvenile justice reforms, says more work needed
Arkansas News, Little Rock, AK – March 14, 2012
A new study presented to lawmakers today praises recent reforms in Arkansas’ juvenile justice system and recommends additional strategies to save money.  “There really has been remarkable work done to reform juvenile justice in this state,” said Pat Arthur, the study’s co-author, a California-based consultant and former attorney at the National Center for Youth Law in San Francisco.

School-To-Prison Pipeline Targeted By Judges, Education Officials
The Huffington Post, St. Louis, MO – March 13, 2012
Jakayla Ivory, a St. Louis high-school student convicted of second-degree assault, likely would have gotten two years in jail. Instead, she went to school at Jimmie Edwards' Innovative Concept Academy.

Foster Care

House in planning stages
Stuttgart Daily Leader, Stuttgart, AK – March 16, 2012
About 25 percent of foster children end up in a jail system within two years of aging out of foster care.  Dana’s House Director Jennifer Poston said about 40 percent end up homeless at some point.  It’s statistics Poston said they hope to beat locally through a future transition house for those about to age out of foster care at age 18

Transitioning Youth Act Is Renewed By Legislature
The Chattanoogan, Tennessee – March 18, 2012
Tennessee lawmakers today passed legislation that legislators said will continue a program that has helped many foster children transition into adulthood. Rep. Mark White (R-Memphis) introduced the bill that will continue the Transitioning Youth Act - a program that provides assistance to foster children between the ages of 18-21 once they age out of the foster care system.

Senate committee approves bill requiring information for foster children
Lexington Herald-Leader, Kentucky – March 14, 2012
Chelsea Hoover told state lawmakers on Wednesday that when her years of being a Kentucky foster child ended, social workers did not give her enough information about programs that could ease her transition into adulthood.

Teen Pregnancy

Governor's task force tackles teen pregnancy, Jackson, MS – March 15, 2012
Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant has formed a task force to reduce the number of teen pregnancies and births in the state.  "Obviously what we're doing has not been working," Bryant said Wednesday in announcing the task force.

More emphasis needed on preventing teen pregnancies, officials say
The Gainsville Sun, Florida – March 13, 2012
In a small building on campus at the Professional Academies Magnet at Loften, Pauline Grimes and four other helpers take care of the school district's youngest students: the infants and toddlers of teen students.  There are 25 teen moms on campus as part of the ACCEPT program, which allows these moms to remain enrolled in school by providing parenting education and free on-site childcare.

Monday, March 12, 2012

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


State High School Graduation Rates Down
KCRG, Des Moines, IA – March 8, 2012
More than one of every 10 students in the high school freshman class of 2007 didn’t make it to graduation in 2011, according to a report released Thursday by officials at the Iowa Department of Education.

Students Take a Stand Vowing to Graduate High School
KFBB ABC, Great Falls, MT – March 7, 2012
Nearly 20 students from Paris Middle School Academy in Great Falls are taking a stand. They are pledging to graduate from high school.

Program may help dropout problem
Hattiesburg American, Mississippi – March 4, 2012
Mississippi's dismal dropout rate could be lessened with an innovative national program. As The Clarion-Ledger reported, Mississippi next fall will join 16 other states in the pilot program to help high school dropouts obtain work skills and college degrees.

Fixing Education’s Broken Windows: The Importance of Early Warning
Dropout Nation - March 5, 2012
We now know that a sixth grader missing 36 or more days of school during the year has less than a one-in-five chance of graduating on time, and the same is true or a peer with discipline issues, while those students missing 18 days will also struggle to graduate.

Juvenile Justice

Juvenile justice reform bill clears big test
Fox 31, Denver, CO – March 8, 2012
Lawmakers Thursday heard from juvenile justice advocates and prosecutors, divided over legislation aimed at protecting youth offenders from entering the criminal justice system as adults.

Foundation Releases Issue Analysis on Georgia Juvenile Justice Reform
Gwinnett Gazette, Georgia – March 8, 2012
Two weeks after releasing its Issue Analysis on criminal justice reform for adults, the Georgia Public Policy Foundation today released "Five Essential Principles for Georgia's Juvenile Justice System," a new Issue Analysis that focuses on how Georgia policy-makers can enhance and improve the way the state deals with juvenile offenders.

Bringing At-Risk Teens Closer to Home: A Forum on Juvenile Justice at The New School
Talk to Me, New York, NY – March 5, 2012
The Center for New York City Affairs hosted a forum on February 2 to review the connection between child welfare and juvenile justice in New York City and the state.  The event, entitled “Ties That Bind: Reimagining juvenile justice and child welfare for teens, families and communities,” was intended to coincide with the implementation of key new initiatives that would bring the administration of the intertwined child welfare, juvenile justice and foster care services under New York City jurisdiction.

Foster Care

Former foster youth step into the workplace to shadow mentors
SF State News, San Francisco, CA – March 6, 2012
Finding a job in today's economy can be a worry for many graduating seniors, but it is a particular concern for students who came to SF State from the foster care system.

Child welfare changes a step closer
World-Herald Bureau, Lincoln, NE – March 8, 2012
Legislative efforts to revamp Nebraska's child welfare system won't directly affect Amy Peters.  Not anymore, at least.  The 22-year-old Lincoln college student aged out of foster care a few years ago.  But she and other former foster children came to the State Capitol on Wednesday to watch lawmakers debate measures to ensure that the state properly cares for current foster children.

Teen Pregnancy

Recruiting adults to prevent unplanned teen pregnancies
Newsworks, Philadelphia, PA – March 5, 2012
This month the WHYY/WURD series on African-American health — In the Gap: Voices from the Health Divide — examines teen pregnancy prevention.  A door-to-door campaign is gearing up in North Philadelphia.

Southcoast RAPPP to offer Youth Development and Health Education camps for children, teens
Wicked Local, Wareham, MA – March 9, 2012
The Southcoast Hospitals’ Responsible Attitudes toward Pregnancy, Parenting & Prevention (RAPPP) Program is offering youth development and reproductive health education classes this summer for boys and girls ages 11 to 14 in a camp-style atmosphere.

Teen pregnancy: Challenges
Enid News, Enid, OK – March 10, 2012
Mykalah Stampley is looking forward to the birth of her baby girl, expected in late May. But, as much as the teen mother is looking forward to her daughter’s arrival, she wants other teens to consider the hardships and challenges that come with teen pregnancy.

Monday, March 05, 2012

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


Legislation to increase the high school dropout age to 18 moves forward in Illinois
St. Louis Today, Illinois – February 28, 2012
President Obama’s call to raise the minimum high school dropout age to 18 is being heard in Illinois.  Legislation proposing to increase the dropout age from 17 years old to 18 is moving forward in the Illinois Senate. The bill, sponsored by state Sen. Kimberly Lightford, D-Westchester, passed through committee this afternoon and is on its way to the Senate floor for debate.

Alternative programs seek to cut schools' dropout rate
Salisbury Post, Salisbury, NC – March 4, 2012
Eduardo Carrillo dropped out his sophomore year at Salisbury High School, leaving to work full time at Old Carolina Brick.  When he got laid off, Carrillo decided it was time to go back to school.

Bill To Deny Licenses To Dropouts Advances
ABC 7, Columbia, SC – March 4, 2012
Lawmakers are taking aim at South Carolina’s high dropout rate with a bill that would take driving privileges away from students who stop going to school.

Juvenile Justice

House passes overhaul of Ga. juvenile justice system; focus on treatment
The Republic, Atlanta, GA – February 29, 2012
Juvenile courts would have to conduct an assessment of children's mental health needs before committing them into state custody as part of an overhaul of the juvenile justice code passed Wednesday by House lawmakers.

Problem youths counseling program nears reality
The Times, Illinois – February 28, 2012

The start up of a home counseling program for troubled youths is getting closer, William Pfalzgraf, the director of court services for the 13th Judicial Circuit, told members of the County Board's Judiciary Committee Tuesday.

Foster Care

UALR grad offers help, hope for former foster kids
Today’s TVH 11, Little Rock, AR – February 29, 2012
Finding a forever family doesn't come easy for everyone. Today's THV has shared countless stories of these children in our Place to Call Home series. For those about to "age out" of foster care, the chance of finding that forever home is even less.

Mary Ware Scholarship aimed at foster students living outside the system
Times-Herald, Georgia – March 4, 2012
The Mary Ware Scholarship was formed in memory of the late Mary Ware because of her love of children in need. The scholarship provides financial grants for qualified recipients to attend a range of Georgia institutions for higher learning, including traditional colleges and universities and trade schools. These grants will go to deserving Georgia high school graduates who meet specific criteria as directed by the Mary Ware Scholarship Fund, which focuses on students who are considered "at risk," do not qualify for other grant options and can demonstrate strong financial need.

JCSU Helps Foster Students Feel At Home
Fox Charlotte, Charlotte, NC – February 27, 2012
"Once you age out of foster care, you're pretty much on your own. You have to find what makes you… you," said Cory Carter, a former foster teen.  Carter entered the system at birth and lived in over 20 foster and group homes.  Carter’s transition to college wasn't easy. After one year of school in California, he was left not able to pay and homeless.  But then, Johnson C. Smith University offered him a full-ride scholarship to play football.

Teen Pregnancy

Teen pregnancies are down in Georgia
WALB 10, Albany, GA – March 3, 2012
A new study shows the country's teen pregnancy rate is at a record low.  It's down 42 per cent from its peak more than 20 years ago.  The numbers are getting better in Georgia too.  Still, many girls who get pregnant drop out of school and become a drain on the economy.  It has dramatic consequences for the young mother if she chooses not to finish school.

Money Seems to Matter for Teen Girls, Condoms
ABC News, Atlanta, GA – February 28, 2012
Teen girls whose primary source of spending money comes from their boyfriends are less likely to use condoms, according to a new study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health.