Presentation on theme: "Child Welfare, Education and the Courts Joyce Burrell, M.S. American Institutes for Research #2 presentation on Panel with Dr. Gary Mallon; Sixto Cancel."— Presentation transcript:
Child Welfare, Education and the Courts Joyce Burrell, M.S. American Institutes for Research #2 presentation on Panel with Dr. Gary Mallon; Sixto Cancel and Judge Denise Cubbon
Thank you conference committee for your vision to include the issues of sub-populations of youth affected by educational systems., as well as the acknowledgement that we can reduce neglect and promote healing by focusing on stability and supports for our children. Thank you for bringing together foster care graduates, court personnel, especially judges; child welfare and education leaders, all of whom can influence the changes that are necessary to insure that more children become successful, self-sufficient adults. You know the education is the foundation for a successful life experience and ALL children, including those in jj, cw, foster care or who are pregnant and/or parenting, as well as our youth who identify as lesbian, gay, transgender, bisexual or intersex.
They are disproportionately poor They have disproportionately high rates of traumatic exposures They are disproportionately children of color They have disproportionate mental health needs Many have learning disabilities (undiagnosed & diag’d) Their families are strugglinb with broken systems They are disproportionately involved in other public systems: ◦ Child Welfare ◦ Substance Abuse Treatment ◦ Family members involved in Criminal Justice
Beautiful, smart and talented Want a rewarding future Want to be with their families Want to do well in school. (although many have given up) Want families Want better family relationships
1.6 million arrested ◦ 24% charged with crimes against persons ◦ 39% - property offenses ◦ 12% drug law violations ◦ 25% public order offenses ◦ (Sickmund and Snyder 2006) ◦ 62% of those processed – probation ◦ 23% placed in a residential setting (juvenile camps, training schools, specialized res. Group homes, etc…) (about 94,000) ◦ 68% boys and 70% of the girls with one or more MH diagnoses (Teplin, L.A., 2002)
Children who have been abused and/or neglected and have committed an offense that brings them to the attention of the jj system (dual jackets) At least half of the children in institutional care in juvenile justice live in families that have come into contact with the CW system, even if the case was not substantiated. These young people must be considered as coming into care having been exposed to trauma* and at least a concern about previous maltreatment, abuse and/or neglect. HUGE INDICATOR that we need to look deep!
High rates of early and continuous school failures High rates of dropping out (NEED Education ADVOCATES) Most have had interruptions in their education experiences, even if it was just to show up in court; at the intake office of the probation department; or for return visits to court due to case continuations. We know that often the educational experience of the children and youth in the juvenile justice system is sub-standard. With tight budgets and rules about 2.5 teachers to 25 children and the high stakes of NCLB—youth in jj are set up to fail. Creative, technology “interested” educators are beginning to solve problems using distance learning**
Most are encouraged to seek a GED and give up their right to special education services*** Under-identification of youth with special education needs Difficulty with timely transferring school records Absence of or insufficient related services and support services required in the IEPs of the identified children Moving from school to school because of placement changes
Feel Obligated to provide a high quality education Engage their families early and often Interagency collaboration between jj, cw, schools and courts. (jj story from NY) (Build TRUST) Always discuss the implications of removing them from their homes and communities Regular review and monitoring of all education programs for these children Indicators to measure progress & outcomes Public reports of outcomes Support services to enhance education service Training and retraining of all staff to understand education needs and advocacy. PS teachers/Behavioral issues training
Welcome lawsuits if your system is forced to work without the resources that permit your staff to do their jobs Judges, please use the tools foster care graduates, you and your peers have developed to ask questions about education progress and barriers to success Keep their families engaged, when all of this is over, they go home to a family resource Help to find funds to hire education advocates for children in child welfare and juvenile justice