Monday, April 09, 2012

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


Massachusetts considers raising school dropout age
The Tufts Daily, Massachusetts – April 5, 2012
The Massachusetts legislature is considering legislation that would increase the mandatory school attendance age from 16 to 18 in an effort to reduce the state’s dropout rate. 

Nebraska lawmakers pass high school dropout bill
KCAU TV, Lincoln, NE – April 3, 2012
Nebraska lawmakers have passed a bill that would make dropping out of high school more difficult.  Lawmakers voted the bill through its final reading Tuesday, 28-20.  The measure by Lexington Sen. John Wightman would only allow students to drop out before age 18 if they can show that they have to work to support their family, or cannot attend school because of an illness.

Randolph program makes ‘Stars’ of potential dropouts
The Boston Globe, Randolph, MA – April 8, 2012
Four years ago, the Stars after-school program at Randolph High School began looking for ways to encourage ninth-graders who were at risk of becoming dropouts to stay in school. This year, its first class is graduating with flying colors, according to Stars officials.

Juvenile Justice

State Senate gives initial approval to juvenile justice reform bill
Fox 31, Denver, CO – April 4, 2012
The Colorado State Senate on Wednesday gave initial approval to one of the most controversial bills of the legislative session: a proposal to strip Colorado district attorneys of their ability to “direct file” the cases of juvenile offenders into the adult prison system.

Ohio Supreme Court strikes down lifetime registration requirements for juvenile sex offenders
The Plain Dealer, Columbus, OH – April 3, 2012
The Ohio Supreme Court on Tuesday struck down a lifetime requirement that certain juvenile sex offenders register online and elsewhere, saying it was cruel and unusual punishment.

Foster Care

New program allows foster youth to remain in state care until age 21
Detroit Free Press, Michigan – April 2, 2012
Foster youth in Michigan can now tap into service until they are 21 under a long-awaited Young Adult Voluntary Foster Care program.

Nonprofit helps those aging out of foster care
Coshocton Tribune, Little Rock, AK – April 5, 2012
Every year, time runs out for 250 young Arkansans — figuratively, perhaps, not literally.  That's where Eric Gilmore comes in.  In August 2010, he and his wife, North Little native Kara Howe Gilmore, started Immerse Arkansas, a nonprofit that offers a helping hand to young people trying to make the transition from foster care to a successful adult life.

Lawmakers get glimpse of Florida’s child welfare system
South Florida Times, Florida – April 5, 2012
Stories of children in peril and relatives and foster care programs caring for them were told during a one-day stop on March 30 in Broward and Miami-counties by the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth looking into possible improvements to federal policy to help children in need.

Teen Pregnancy

Jackson County Initiative Helps Prevent Teen Pregnancy 
WILX, Jackson County, MI – April 2, 2012
Jackson County has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the state of Michigan, but a group of teens is taking a stand to change that legacy. Jackson County's Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative (TPPI) was recently given more than $600,000 over the next three years in state and federal grants. The grants allow the TPPI to provide support and mentoring for at-risk Jackson County teens through programming and educational assemblies.

Teen Pregnancy More Prevalent In States With High Income Inequality: Study
The Huffington Post – April 3, 2012
While plenty of research confirms that living in poverty increases the chances of teen pregnancy, new information suggests that when low-income teenagers live in places with high income inequality the risk of pregnancy is even higher.

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