Monday, November 26, 2012

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


Communities in Schools program aims to prevent dropouts in East Nashville
The Tennessean, Nashville, TN – November 26, 2012
A national dropout prevention program is setting up shop in Nashville in hopes of helping some the city’s poorest kids graduate from high school.  The 30-year-old national Communities in Schools program is the only nonprofit drop¬out prevention organization in the nation to show both an increase in graduation rates and progress made on reading and math scores during a five-year study, said Francie Hunt, the group’s Nashville liaison.

System warns educators of dropout risk
The Spokesman-Review, Spokane, WA – November 23, 2012
A data system launched this fall in Spokane Public Schools puts each child’s academic and behavioral information at educators’ fingertips, helping educators address problems at an earlier stage.

Gadsden City Schools launches FOCUSED program
The Gadsden Times, Gadsden, AL – November 25, 2012
Gadsden City Schools will launch a new program in January focused on graduation intervention and dropout prevention through community support.

Juvenile Justice

Report Says Teen Neurology Should Shape Juvenile Justice Reform Efforts – November 21, 2012
A new report from the National Research Council suggests that juvenile justice reform efforts should be grounded in the emerging understanding of adolescent development.  “Reforming Juvenile Justice: A Developmental Approach,” sponsored by the federal Department of Justice, draws strong connections between the neurological development of teens and their environmental influences as factors in juvenile delinquency.

Legislature to review mandatory sentencing for juvenile offenders
Wicked Local, Newton, MA – November 20, 2012
With the pending murder trail of a former Newton North High School student raising questions about the incarceration of juveniles and the distinction between state and federal law, a local state legislator is spearheading an effort to address the broader issue of certain mandatory sentences for juveniles.

Foster Care

Ohio AG Wants To Make It Easier For Foster Children To Make It On Their Own, Columbus, OH – November 19, 2012
A recent state report said many foster children "lack skills for independent living and often end up homeless."  A Wisconsin study found that half had no jobs, and a third ended up homeless and victims of crime.  Next month, the Attorney General's task force will recommend some ways to help them.

Memphis-based program gives Tennessee's most vulnerable teens needed support system
The Commercial Appeal, Memphis, TN – November 25, 2012
Nineteen-year-old Marquez Hardaway's earliest memory is of his father bleeding and running to get into the family's car.  As a foster care kid who was about to "age out" of the child welfare system without being adopted, he is among the population most likely to end up in jail, without a job, abusing drugs or alcohol, impoverished or even homeless.  But Hardaway was paired with a mentor, James Caldwell, 27, a specialist with the Transitional Living program at Youth Villages.

Teen Pregnancy

High school dropout effort is yielding results, say officials
Wrangler News, Tempe, AZ – November 19, 2012
Becoming a parent at a young age doesn’t necessarily mean dropping out of high school, and the Tempe Union High School District’s Adolescent Pregnancy and Parenting Program appears to be proving the point.

Study: Pregnant teens need better school support
Bradenton Herald, Miami, FL – November 22, 2012
When 15-year-old Kali Gonzalez became pregnant, the honors student considered transferring to an alternative school. She worried teachers would harass her for missing class because of doctor's appointments and morning sickness.  Instead, her counselor set up a meeting with teachers at her St. Augustine high school to confirm she could make up missed assignments, eat in class and use the restroom whenever she needed.

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