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February 2018

At El Dorado ACEs Collaborative meeting, NPPC talks ACEs, new connections forged

More than 65 people showed up in person in Placerville or via teleconferencing from South Lake Tahoe on Feb. 21 to learn about the National Pediatric Practice Community on ACEs (NPPC), a program of the San Francisco-based Center for Youth Wellness . Among the discussion points made by NPPC Program Manager Leena Singh were the connection between ACEs and health outcomes, the need for doing universal ACEs screening, and the necessary infrastructure to implement ACEs screening, according to...

California Supremes Say 50+ Years In Prison For Juvenile Non-Murder Crimes Is Unconstitutional [witnessla.com]

In a 4-3 decision Monday, the California Supreme Court ruled that juvenile sentences of 50 years or more for non-homicide crimes are unconstitutional in that they don’t give minors who are “ constitutionally different from adults for purposes of sentencing ” a reasonable chance for release during their lifetimes. The defendants in the case, Leonel Contreras and William Rodriguez , were convicted of kidnapping and raping two teenage girls at knifepoint in 2011. Contreras and Rodriguez, both...

State profiles of ACEs initiatives debut! Use them as a new community building tool to accelerate your progress

Profiles of statewide and major local ACEs initiatives in the 50 states and the District of Columbia are now available from ACEs Connection. You’ll learn about other states and maybe even a few things about your own. This series is just the start of curating highlights of the most significant initiatives across the country. The next iteration will provide even more details. How to use this series: The invaluable information many of you provided to our ACEs Connection team on what is...

California Hopes to Place More Probation Youth in Foster Homes Like This (chronicleofsocialchange.org)

Starcania Ford’s first call came not too long after she had completed two months of background checks and trainings. Could she come and pick up a young man waiting at the juvenile delinquency court near downtown Los Angeles? Ford, 38, who lives with her adult daughter, is the only licensed foster parent for probation youth in L.A. County. She’s part of a state initiative that has seen probation departments across the state jump headlong into the business of finding foster parents. The goal...

Single state agency needed to coordinate California's 'patchwork' of early childhood education programs, new report urges (edsource.org)

California will continue to lag behind other states in providing enough child care slots and diverse preschool options for all its nearly 2.5 million children under the age of 5 until it develops a more unified system that provides affordable care and makes it easier for families to enroll. That is a key recommendation in a recent report published by the Learning Policy Institute . Researchers say California needs to have one state-level agency that will help coordinate the state’s...

As the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools turns 10, a new report shows this unique turnaround model is driving big gains at struggling campuses (laschoolreport.org)

The Partnership for Los Angeles Schools is a unique school model that focuses on turning around the lowest-scoring schools with the highest dropout rates in the toughest neighborhoods of Los Angeles — Boyle Heights, Watts, and South Los Angeles. LA Unified invites the Partnership into struggling schools, which then benefit from more freedoms, community resources, and organizational support. Teachers and principals receive intensive professional development, and principals are sometimes...

San Diego homicides drop sharply in past year but why? (sandiegouniontribune.com)

For the first time in three years, homicides fell across the county. Police leaders and experts hesitated to credit the drop to any one factor or tactic, but a dramatic decrease in killings in southeastern San Diego might offer clues. That decrease matched a fall in nearly every other major crime category in 2017 as well, from assaults and rapes, to burglary and vehicle theft. There’s the Community Assistance Support Team made up of pastors and community members who reach out to victims and...

Teaching Peaceful Conflict Resolution Transforms Lives For Both UCLA Students & Former South LA Gang Members (witnessla.com)

Wilms, professor of education emeritus in the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, has spent his career dedicated to finding ways to apply his scholarship and some of UCLA’s institutional influence to advance social justice and equality. After taking a conflict mediation class in 1998 taught by Avis Ridley-Thomas, then-director of the dispute resolution program in the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, Wilms had the idea to bring that to UCLA. So he invited...

“Get Out!” Report Breaks Down Black Male Suspensions During 2016-2017 School Year [witnessla.com]

A new study of race and school discipline in California counties has revealed that the black male student suspension rate decreased 5 percent between the 2011-2012 and 2016-2017 school years—from 17.8 percent of all black boys to 12.8 percent. Racial disparities remain intact, however. Black boys’ 12.8 percent suspension rate during the last school year was more than 3.5 times the rate of the CA public school population as a whole (3.6 percent), according to the report, which was created in...

Suspension rates for black male students in California higher for foster youth, rural students (EdSource)

Black male students in rural counties and those in foster care are suspended at some of the highest rates in California, a new report has found. The report also found that the disparity in suspension rates among black male students compared to all students is greatest in kindergarten through the 3rd grade. The report, titled " Get Out! Black Male Suspensions in California Public Schools ," looked at suspensions through the 2016-17 school year. It was authored by J. Luke Wood and Frank Harris...

Wristbands Connect East County Homeless To Services (kpbs.org)

For the past week, the East County Chamber of Commerce has been giving out wristbands to local homeless shelters and first responders. Their goal is to better connect homeless people to services and resources. People can text "ConnectEC" to 77453, which then gives them options for help covering basic needs such as health and shelter. The idea is to refer them to local resources, like the Crisis House in El Cajon. The East County Chamber of Commerce said they worked with people who are...

Meet the judge at the center of O.C. riverbed homeless case who is known for his unconventional, hands-on approach (latimes.com)

Carter's uncommon approach to his cases has been on display recently. The 73-year-old U.S. District Court judge is presiding over a clash pitting homeless advocates against officials from Orange County and the cities of Anaheim, Costa Mesa and Orange who are seeking to clear out homeless encampments along a three-mile stretch of the Santa Ana River trail. Officials began clearing the river encampments last month, but the judge insisted it be done "humanely and with dignity," and issued a...

ICE’s LA Raids were Entirely Preventable - Blame Garcetti and Brown (citywatchla.com)

That collateral damage is courtesy of myopic local politicians focused more on trending social media topics rather than on pragmatic leadership. (For the purpose of this article, let’s differentiate between undocumented immigrants with notable criminal activity such as prior deportations, DUI, identity theft, domestic violence and other blatantly dangerous misconduct, and undocumented immigrants whose only illegal activity is their presence or employment in the U.S. That is a topic for...

Everyone knows we can't arrest our way out of homelessness. So why is L.A. still trying? (latimes.com)

As the number of homeless people has risen dramatically in Los Angeles, so has the tension between those living in squalor on the sidewalks and the residents who have to walk past their encampments, the smell of urine in the air. City officials struggle to balance the rights of homeless people with the rights of everyone else. The region clearly needs to create more housing, but that has been a maddeningly slow process in a city with 34,000 homeless people. In the meantime, homeless people...

L.A. County's homeless problem is worsening despite billions from tax measures (latimes.com)

Los Angeles County's homeless population is increasing faster than the supply of new housing, even with the addition of thousands of beds in the last two years and millions of dollars beginning to flow in from two ballot measures targeting the crisis, according to a long-awaited report by the region's homelessness agency. The report showed that officials two years ago far underestimated how much new housing would be needed when they asked city and county voters to approve the tax measures.

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