Monday, June 03, 2013

This Week's News: Youth in Transition


Edinburg high school dropout recovery program hits milestone, Edinburg, TX – May 30, 2013
A group of former high school dropouts received their diploma in Edinburg.  “The Vision Academy,” a recovery program created by the superintendent of Edinburg CISD, gives dropouts a second chance at a high school diploma.  Today, the school graduated its 500th student.

How to Cure the College Dropout Syndrome
The New York Times – June 2, 2013
Jeffrey Selingo, the former editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education and currently an editor at large there, is the author of a new book, “College (Un)Bound.” In it, he argues that the higher-education system is both vital to the American economy and “broken.” (An essay adapted from the book was published in the Education Life section of The Times last month.) My exchange with him, edited slightly, follows.

Cobb, Marietta high school graduation rates increase
The Marietta Daily Journal, Marietta, GA – June 2, 2013
High schools in both the Cobb and Marietta school systems reported increases in the number of students who graduated compared to last year, but only Cobb’s rates were higher than the state’s overall rate.

Juvenile Justice

Gov. Heineman signs juvenile justice reform into law
Omaha World Herald, Nebraska – May 30, 2013
The state embarked on a new approach in dealing with troubled juveniles Wednesday.  Gov. Dave Heineman signed into law a major reform bill that shifts the focus from incarceration to treatment for youthful offenders and puts state probation officers in charge of that rehabilitation work instead of state social workers.

Juvenile Justice Dept. Brings Reform Plans to Fort Myers
WGCU, NPR News, Fort Meyers, FL – May 28, 2013
The Florida Department of Juvenile Justice has been taking its plans for reform on the road since last fall, making presentations and soliciting feedback.  The DJJ’s Roadmap to System Excellence tour comes to Fort Myers Tuesday evening.  The Roadmap reforms involve placing less emphasis on detention of juvenile offenders and more emphasis on community based intervention programs to keep kids out of the system.

Foster Care

New law extends foster age to 21
The Daytona Beach News-Journal, Florida – June 2, 2013
Soon after blowing out the candles on his 18th birthday cake, Calub Short left his Deltona group foster home and entered the real world.  With no safety net to fall back on, Short used his savings to buy a car and secure an apartment. But he went through those savings fast.

Aging Out: Gaining a voice
Great Bend Tribune, Great Bend, KS – May 29, 2013
Memorial day weekend is here.  Families are getting together for cookouts and camping trips, taking trips to the cemetery to honor their ancestors and loved ones.  We often take these ties for granted.  In a perfect world, after a child is taken from their family and placed in the foster care system, a loving and understanding foster family would be found to take the child and provide a stable home, and they would remain there until they are reunited with their family or adopted by another.  They would also be able to remain in their own community, attend the same school they always had.  Unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world.  In recent years, initiatives by several non-profit have focused on bringing these inequities to the attention of members of Congress.
Teen Pregnancy

Education can help prevent teen pregnancy
Billings Gazette, Montana – June 2, 2013
In Montana, we saw 5,272 teen pregnancies in 2011. And Montana is one of only three states whose teen birth rates did not decrease from 2007-2010. Teen pregnancy is typically affected by a range of factors, including access to accurate, comprehensive information on sexual health from parents, teachers, doctors and other adults, access to birth control, what they hear from friends, media and the Internet, and other risky choices.

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