A good education is the foundation for successful life experiences. Children who receive quality education services, meet age-appropriate education milestones, and earn high school and post-secondary school diplomas have significantly brighter outcomes as adults. In addition to providing an avenue for employment, there is broad agreement that education opens doors and provides opportunities to enrich our lives.
Two groups of children, who frequently have complex educational needs, are less likely to receive adequate education services than their peers. Youth involved with the juvenile delinquency system and those in the foster care system face barriers to receiving the education services to which they are entitled. As a consequence, they are less likely to achieve education milestones, earn diplomas, and experience the health and wellbeing benefits associated with higher income and stable employment as adults. For crossover youth known to both child welfare and juvenile justice, the challenges are even greater.
The purpose of this symposium and the accompanying paper were to outline potential strategies, programs and resources that enable political and agency leaders, policymakers, and practitioners to act collaboratively across systems to effectively improve the educational outcomes for youth known to multiple systems of care.
- Shay Bilchik, Director and Research Professor, Center for Juvenile Justice Reform, Georgetown University
- Kent Berkley, Senior Associate Director, Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative
- The Honorable Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Co-Founder of the RFK Juvenile Justice Collaborative and former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland
- David Osher, Vice President, Division of Education, Human Development and the Workforce, American Institutes for Research
- Simon Gonsoulin, Project Director, National Evaluation and Technical Assistance Center for the Education of Children and Youth Who Are Neglected, Delinquent, or At Risk
- Peter Leone, Professor, University of Maryland, College Park
- Lois Weinberg, Professor, California State University, Los Angeles
- Darius Watts, Rock Creek Academy High School, prior student at the Maya Angelou Academy at New Beginnings Youth Development Center
- Jennifer Rodriguez, Staff Attorney, Youth Law Center
- David Gordon, Sacramento County Superintendent of Schools
- Marc Schindler, Interim Director, Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services
- David Domenici, Principle, Maya Angelou Academy at New Beginnings Youth Development Center, Co-Founder, See Forever/Maya Angelou Public Charter Schools
- The Honorable Congressman Robert C. Scott, U.S. House of Representatives
- The Honorable Anita Josey-Herring, Associate Judge, Superior Court of D.C.
- Kathleen O’Neill Sande, Juvenile Justice Schools/Institution Education Program Supervisor, Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction
- Kristin Schutte, Student Services Center Director, Olympic Educational Service District 114
- Richard Gold, Deputy Secretary, Office of Children, Youth and Families, Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare
- Richard Steele, Director of Policy and Program Development, Juvenile Court Judges’ Commission
- Maura McInerney, Staff Attorney, Education Law Center
- Renee Bradley, Deputy Director, Research to Practice Division, Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education
- Bryan Samuels, Commissioner, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
- Jeff Slowikowski, Acting Administrator, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, U.S. Department of Justice
- Ann Whalen, Special Assistant to the Secretary of Education, U.S. Department of Education
- Robert Schwartz, Executive Director, Juvenile Law Center
Materials from the Event:
- Agenda, Speaker Biographies, and Participant List
- PowerPoint Presentations
- David Osher, American Institutes for Research
- Author Presentation (Peter Leone and Lois Weinberg)
- Improving Educational Outcomes for Youth in the Child Weflare and Juvenile Justice Systems: California AB 490 Change through Legislation
- Overview of the Maya Angelou Academy: A See Forever School (Washington, DC)
- Building Systemic Reform: Policies, Practices, and Collaborations that Improve Educational Outcomes (Pennsylvania)
- Policy Implications, U.S. Department of Education
- Press Release (PDF)
The Center for Juvenile Justice Reform would like to acknowledge the support of the following sponsors: American Institutes for Research, Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative, National Evaluation and Technical Assistance Center for the Education of Children and Youth Who Are Neglected, Delinquent, or At Risk (NDTAC), Robert F. Kennedy Juvenile Justice Collaborative: A Project of the RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights and the RFK Children’s Action Corps.