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Youth Topics is a service of the Center for Children and Families, Department of Community and Human Services, City of Alexandria.  It is produced by Jacqueline Coachman, DCHS Office of Youth Services. 

Subscribe here. Make inquiries here. Youth Topics is posted online here. 

 

In the September 4 Edition: 

Events
First Responders Cup and Homecoming Day (September 7)
Cheerleading Registration Deadline (September 7) 
Jefferson-Houston Ribbon Cutting (September 12)
Girls Volleyball Leagues Registration Deadline (September 15)
Miracle Baseball League of Alexandria Registration Deadline (September 15)
Health Care Career Fair (September 17)
Addiction Recovery Month Community Celebration (September 17)
How Our Current Budget Priorities Are Shaping Our Children’s Future (September 18)
Second Annual Community Partnership Job Expo (October 1) 

Careers/Volunteerism 
Weight of the State Call for Abstracts
Youth Leadership for Service-Learning Excellence Award
Prudential Spirit of Community Awards
ING Unsung Heroes Program
50 States for Good Competition
William T. Grant Foundation Distinguished Fellows Program
Fellowships in Mathematics and Theoretical Physics
Doctoral Students for Field Studies
2015 Young Investigator Awards
Soros Justice Fellowship Program
USF Master of Science Degree in Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health
National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Stipends
Alexandria Campaign on Adolescent Pregnancy (ACAP) eNewsletter
Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition of Alexandria (SAPCA) Newsletter 

Grantsmanship
DCHS Office of Youth Services Listing of Grant Opportunities
 

Research & Resources 
Noah Lyles. Josephus Lyles Bring Home Gold Medals in Summer World Events
Police Department Video Offers Back-To-School Safety Tips
Toward an End to Hunger in Alexandria
Apply Online for Free or Reduced-Price ACPS Meals
The Lunch Bus: Bringing Summer Meals to Hungry Students
Adults Rank Obesity as Biggest Child-Health Concern Locally 
Parent Perceptions of Children’s Weight Found to Be Increasingly Inaccurate
Fifty Years Later, Revamped ‘Freedom Schools’ Still Help Struggling Students
Black Boys in Crisis: Why Aren’t They Reading?
St. Louis Rams Give Free Preseason Tickets to Ferguson H.S. Football Players
Schools in Ferguson, Mo. Suspend Black Students at Higher Rates Than Their Peers
District Bans Discussion of Ferguson Protests Citing Opinionated Teachers
Teacher Raises Over $100,000 to Feed Ferguson Students
Police Shootings Demonstrate Need for Social Workers to Press for Reforms
Youth M.O.V.E. Oregon Models Ground Breaking Approach to Healing After School Shooting
Sandy Hook Educators Push to Make Background Checks a Campaign Issue
In School Shootings, ‘He Just Snapped’ Is a Myth
Promising New Approach Helps Curb Early Schizophrenia in Teens, Young Adults
Inmates’ Kids Face Mental and Physical Health Problems Later in Life|
Recasting At-Risk Students as Leaders
Police in Los Angeles Schools to Curtail Arrests, Citations for Minor Offenses
Behavior Control Linked to Language Skills
Counting Homeless Youth
Report to Congress on Runaway and Homeless Youth Program
Parent-Student Education Needed for Homeless Families
All the Pointers You Need to Help Homeless Students Finish High School – And Go on to College
Don’t Call Them Dropouts
White House Announces Summit, New Efforts to Boost College Access
Republican National Committee Condemns New AP History Framework
Under Fire, College Board to ‘Clarify’ New U.S. History Framework
Math Fluency Linked to Changes in Brain
Does Having Teachers of Their Own Race Help Students Avoid Pregnancy?
Timeline: Marking Demographic Changes in Schools
Indiana School Districts’ Obamacare Challenge Moves Forward
Death of Georgia H.S. Football Player Raises Over-Hydration Concerns
High School Participation Rises for the First Time in Five Years
Can Schools Respect Individuality Without Cultivating Narcissism in Students?
How to End Bullying: Participants Talk Action at National Summit
“KnowBullying” App Helps Parents and Others Prevent Bullying
Preparing and Responding to Cyberbullying: Tips for Law Enforcement
New Irish Movie Examines Impact of Suicide on Family and Friends
White House Symposium Address Family-Engagement Practices Nationwide
New York Posts ‘Parents’ Bill of Rights’ to Safeguard Student Data
More Parents Want Summer Learning Programs for Their Kids
At Higher Achievement, Staff as Well as Students Get Writing Lessons
Summit Weighs State of Early-Childhood Education
Obama Administration Unveils New Preschool Grant Program
Jobs Report: An Education Imperative
Job-Driven Partnership Resources for Local Workforce Investment Boards and Public Housing AuthoritiesA Wet Route to School 

 Workshops & Webinars 
Implementing Evidence-Based Services (September 17)
Threat Assessment Strategies for Schools and Higher Education (September 23)
Introduction to Women and Substance Use Disorders On-Line Course (On-Demand)
Girls Matter! (On-Demand) 

   ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ 

     

Events

First Responders Cup and Homecoming Day (September 7)
The annual event hosted by the Sports Section of the Alexandria Department of Recreation, Parks and Cultural Activities and the Alexandria Titans Youth Football Booster Club will be held at the George Washington Middle School football fields (1005 Mt. Vernon Avenue). A special 9/11 ceremony at Noon will honor the victims of September 11, 2001. Following the ceremony, Fire, EMS, Sheriff and Police personnel will assist the first game coin toss on each field before Alexandria teams play Arlington County. There will be ten games of one hour duration on two fields for the remainder of the afternoon. 

Cheerleading Registration Deadline (September 7)
The Sports Section of the Alexandria Department of Recreation, Parks, and Cultural Activities is now accepting registrations for the Youth Cheerleading Program for ages 5-16. Age is determined by the age of the participant as of April 30, 2015. Registration forms must be submitted to neighborhood recreation centers or mailed to the Sports Office (1108 Jefferson Street, Alexandria, VA 22314) by September 7. There is no registration fee, but there are costs such as competition fees and uniforms. For additional information, call the Sports Office (703.746.5402) or visit alexandriava.gov/recreation for registration forms or to register online. 

Jefferson-Houston Ribbon Cutting (September 12)
Join the Alexandria City School Board, Superintendent Alvin L. Crawley and Alexandria Mayor William D. Euille at 10 a.m. to celebrate the official grand opening of the new Jefferson-Houston School building. Festivities include a performance by Jefferson-Houston students, remarks from school and division leadership, a building dedication, and guided tours of the new facility. 

Girls Volleyball Leagues Registration Deadline (September 15)
The Alexandria Department of Recreation, Parks and Cultural Activities is accepting registrations until September 15. Girls must be Alexandria residents ages 9-14 (as of December 31, 2014). The registration fee is $50 and payable by check or money order when registering via mail or in office. Online registration is available (select Sports-Sports-Classes/Leagues All Ages; the activity number is 222703). 

Miracle Baseball League of Alexandria Registration Deadline (September 15)
The Miracle Baseball League is a program of the Alexandria Department of Recreation, Parks, and Cultural Activities for residents ages 5 – Adults who have mental and/or physical challenges or those looking for an alternative to highly competitive sports programs. Games will be played at the Kelly Cares Miracle Baseball Field located at the Lee Center. Youth games will be held on Friday nights at 6 p.m. and adult games Saturdays at 1 p.m. beginning September 19. For additional information, call the Sports Office (703.746.5402) or visit the websites of Recreation or the Miracle League of Alexandria

Health Care Career Fair (September 17)
JobLink has joined the Beatley Central Library to host a career fair from 2 – 6 p.m. for all seeking employment in the healthcare industry. Attendees are asked to pre-register, bring plenty of resumes, and dress in professional attire. Participating employers are Inova Alexandria Hospital, Woodbine Rehabilitation and Healthcare, Greenspring Assisted Living, and Delta T Group. 

Addiction Recovery Month Community Celebration (September 17)
The free event will take place from 4-7 p.m. at the Lee Center (1108 Jefferson Street). The celebration will feature the “Art Uniting People” exhibit (experience recovery through art) as well as music, Moon Bounce, door prizes, barbeque, and information about prevention and recovery. For more information, contact James Green (703.746.5919) 

How Our Current Budget Priorities Are Shaping Our Children’s Future (September 18)
The Urban Institute will host a discussion of the latest findings from the Kids Share project, which presents trends in public spending on children. Federal spending on children is expected to fall as a share of both total federal spending and the overall economy. A panel of experts will discuss what is influencing the spending patterns, what must happen to change the trends, how to differentiate between short and long-term trade-offs, and whether childhood investments can be boosted or even simply maintained given other budgetary pressures. A light lunch will be available at 11:30 a.m. followed by the program from 12 – 1:30 p.m. at The Urban Institute (5th Floor, 2100 M Street N.W.,Washington, D.C.). Registration is required. 

Second Annual Community Partnership Job Expo (October 1)
The event will take place at Charles Houston Recreation Center (901 Wythe Street) from 5:30 – 8 p.m. 

STEM Connections Fair (October 17)
The fair from 2:15–3:45 p.m. at T. C. Williams High School will give prospective mentors a chance to network with students and learn more about the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Academy program for 10th graders. Groups of two to three students will work closely with mentors, either in-person or virtually, to receive content knowledge, professional advice, and guidance. If interested in participating in the mentor fair and/or potentially becoming a mentor for the 2014-15 school year, complete the online form.   

Careers/Volunteerism 

Weight of the State Call for Abstracts
The Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth and Prevention Connections are hosting the Weight of the State 2015 conference from April 20-21 at the Hilton Richmond Hotel at Short Pump. Conference organizers are seeking plenary and concurrent session presenters who are engaged in strategies to increase access to healthy foods, promote physical activity, and reduce and prevent childhood obesity to submit proposals for consideration in developing the conference agenda. The deadline for the submission of abstracts is October 15. 

Youth Leadership for Service-Learning Excellence Award
The National Youth Leadership Council is accepting applications for an award that honors service-learning programs and projects that demonstrate outstanding youth leadership. Projects and programs that show a high level of youth initiative are the award’s primary focus. There are three award categories: Service-Learning Practitioner Leadership Award; Youth Leadership for Service-Learning Excellence Award; and the Alec Dickson Servant Leader Award. The deadline for nominations is November 7. 

Prudential Spirit of Community Awards
Prudential Financial and the National Association of Secondary School Principals annually honor middle and high school students in the United States who volunteer in communities at home or abroad. Several students in each state and the District of Columbia will be named runners-up, with one middle level and one high school student named a state honoree. State honoree will receive a $1,000 cash award, a silver medallion, and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. in May for special recognition events. A national committee will select America’s top youth volunteers from the state honorees. National honorees receive $5,000 cash awards, gold medallions, and grants of $5,000 from the Prudential Foundation for a charitable organization of their choice 

ING Unsung Heroes Program
The financial services company ING annually recognizes K-12 educators in the United States for their innovative teaching methods, creative educational projects, and ability to positively influence the children they teach. One hundred educators are selected each year to receive awards of $2,000 each to help fund their innovative class projects. Of the one hundred finalists, three will be selected for additional financial awards. First place will receive $25,000; second place will receive $10,000; and the third place winner will receive $5,000. The deadline for applications is April 30. 

50 States for Good Competition
The competition sponsored by Tom’s of Maine recognizes organizations and projects committed to meaningful change and work that addresses pressing local needs. Fifty-one organizations (one from each state and the District of Columbia) will be chosen by public vote to receive $10,000 each in support of a current or future community project or event. The program has funded community playgrounds, sustainable nature trails, shelter and food for the homeless, and animal care. Nominations are due September 30. 

William T. Grant Foundation Distinguished Fellows Program
The program is designed to increase the supply of, demand for, and use of high-quality research in the service of improved youth outcomes. To accomplish its goals, the program gives influential mid-career researchers the opportunity to immerse themselves in practice or policy settings and gives influential practitioners and policy makers the opportunity to work in research settings. The program generally selects between one and four fellows annually. Each will receive up to $175,000 (including direct and indirect costs) for the duration of the fellowship. Fellowships may range from six months to two years. The foundation also may provide a small grant of up to $25,000 to the fellowship site to defray the costs associated with hosting a fellow. Letters of Inquiry must be submitted by January 6, 2015. 

Fellowships in Mathematics and Theoretical Physics
The Simons Foundation is inviting applications for two programs that will award grants of up to $100,000 to university faculty for a research leave from classroom teaching and administrative obligations for up to a semester to boost creativity and/or provide intellectual stimulation. Only scientists employed at U.S. and Canadian institutions with a Ph. D. program are eligible to apply. Applications are due September 30. 

Doctoral Students for Field Studies
Through its Lewis and Clark Fund, the American Philosophical Society will award grants of up to $5,000 to doctoral students for exploratory field studies that include collection of specimens and data. The program supports projects within disciplines that have a large dependence on field studies, including but not limited to archeology, anthropology, biology, ecology, geography, geology, linguistics, paleontology, and population genetics. Applicants must be doctoral students, postdoctoral fellows, or master’s degree candidates. The deadline for application is February 2, 2015; the deadline for Letters of Support is January 30, 2015. 

2015 Young Investigator Awards
The Sexual Medicine Society of North America seeks to increase public awareness of healthy sexuality and sexual problems and to encourage scholarship and research in the field. The society has issued a Request for Proposals for an annual program that offers young investigators who are interested in sexual medicine research the opportunity to obtain funding for their research while working in the field of sexual medicine. The program awards grants in two categories: a research fellowship which funds post-doctoral/post-residency fellows, and mini-grants that fund graduate or medical students, residents in graduate medical education training programs, and undergraduate students. The deadline for applications is October 1. 

Soros Justice Fellowship Program
An initiative of the Criminal Justice Fund of the Open Society Foundations, the fellowship program supports individuals who will further its mission of reducing the nation’s over-reliance on policies of punishment and incarceration, and restoring discretion and fairness to the U.S. criminal justice system. The fellowships fund outstanding individuals (including lawyers, advocates, grassroots organizers, activist academics, journalists, and filmmakers) to implement innovative projects that address the Criminal Justice Fund priorities: reducing mass incarceration, challenging extreme punishment, and promoting justice system accountability. The deadline for applications is October 22. 

USF Master of Science Degree in Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health
The degree prepares professionals for service in public and nonprofit agencies and schools that work with diverse children and adolescents experiencing behavioral health challenges and their families. The deadline for applications for the Spring term is October 15; the deadline for the Fall term is February 15. 

National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Stipends
The program supports advanced research that is of value to humanities scholars and general audiences. Recipients usually produce articles, monographs, books, digital materials, archaeological site reports, translations, editions, or other scholarly resources. The deadline for applications is September 30. 

Alexandria Campaign on Adolescent Pregnancy (ACAP) eNewsletter
ACAP has developed “Parent Resource Packets” containing concise information about prevention and raising health teens in today’s world along with fun giveaway items that will be distributed during Back to School Nights at five ACPS campuses. The locations, dates and times are featured in the latest edition of the ACAP eNewsletter. Contact Lisette Torres if interested in volunteering.  

Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition of Alexandria (SAPCA) Newsletter
The latest edition of the SAPCA Newsletter cites a new Gallup Poll that found 22% of Americans support a complete ban on smoking and 55% would make it illegal to smoke in all public places. Only 9% of smokers supported a complete ban.   

Grantsmanship

DCHS Office of Youth Services Listing of Grant Opportunities
 The DCHS Office of Youth Services compiled a listing of grant opportunities on August 13

Research & Resources

Noah Lyles. Josephus Lyles Bring Home Gold Medals in Summer World Events
Noah Lyles of T.C. Williams won the men’s 200-meter race at the 2014 Youth Olympic Games, His brother and T.C. Williams teammate Josephus Lyles was a part of the gold-medal winning U.S. 4×400 team at the World Junior Championships in Eugene, Ore. After the school year ended, the brothers went to North Carolina to train with their father, who was a standout sprinter at Seton Hall in the 1990s before running professionally. 

Police Department Video Offers Back-To-School Safety Tips
The speed limit in school zones has been reduced from 25 to 15 mph. In a new video, Alexandria Police Department Chief Earl Cook talks about the reduced speed limit and other back-to-school safety procedures. 

Toward an End to Hunger in Alexandria
A working group of the Alexandria Childhood Obesity Action Network (A-COAN) commissioned an analysis of food hardship in the city. The report estimates that as many as one in five Alexandrians, disproportionately children, are living in households struggling to make ends meet. Alexandria also lags behind some neighboring jurisdictions in organizing improved access to food assistance by both area nonprofits and the local government. Many Alexandrians eligible for SNAP (food stamps) are not using the food assistance program. 

Apply Online for Free or Reduced-Price ACPS Meals
Families can apply for free or reduced-price meals anytime online using an Internet-enabled computer. Secure and confidential electronic submission ensures that the completed application reaches the School Nutrition office quickly and that students obtain eligibility benefits faster. 

The Lunch Bus: Bringing Summer Meals to Hungry Students
Hudson, Florida has a mobile summer feeding program.The bus makes three stops and feeds about 125 hungry kids each day. 

Adults Rank Obesity as Biggest Child-Health Concern Locally
In a nationwide survey released by the University of Michigan’s C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, over 2,000 adults ages 18 and older were asked to rate 26 health issues such as alcohol abuse, bullying, hunger, internet safety, and school violence as a “big problem”, “somewhat of a problem”, or “not a problem” for children and teens in their own community as well as children and teens across the United States. Obesity topped the list in both instances: 29% deemed childhood obesity locally, while 55% considered it a “big concern” nationally. 

Parent Perceptions of Children’s Weight Found to Be Increasingly Inaccurate
A study published online in the journal Pediatrics found parents’ perceptions of their children’s weight became increasingly inaccurate over the past few decades. Parents were 16% less likely to correctly identify their overweight or obese children as overweight in 2005-10 compared to 1988-94. More than three-quarters of parents in 2005-10 perceived their overweight children as ‘about the right weight”. 

Fifty Years Later, Revamped ‘Freedom Schools’ Still Help Struggling Students
Freedom School is an academic enrichment program originally created in the civil rights era to teach history and literacy with the goal of empowering African-Americans. At a time when Mississippi’s test scores lag behind national standards, Freedom Schools have been making a comeback. They owe their revival to the Children’s Defense Fund, a nonprofit advocacy organization that runs Freedom Schools in 29 states. 

Black Boys in Crisis: Why Aren’t They Reading?
The Black Star Project has published findings that state just 10 percent of eighth-grade Black boys in the U.S. are considered "proficient" in reading. In urban areas like Chicago and Detroit, that number was even lower. By contrast, the 2013 National Assessment of Education Progress found that 46% of white students are adequate readers by eighth grade compared to 17% of black students as a whole. The achievement gap between the two races is startling, but the difference between the NAEP report on Black students as a whole and the Black Star findings of just Black boys is as well. It is not simply Black children in general who appear to be failing in basics like literacy – it is the boys.  

St. Louis Rams Give Free Preseason Tickets to Ferguson H.S. Football Players
With tension still running high in Ferguson, Missouri following the killing of 18 year-old Michael Brown, the St. Louis Rams reached out to three local high school football teams to offer free tickets to a preseason game against the Green Bay Packers. 

Schools in Ferguson, Mo. Suspend Black Students at Higher Rates Than Their Peers
In the 13,234-student Ferguson-Florrisant school district, black students make up 77.1 percent of total enrollment. Yet 87.1 percent of students without disabilities who receive an out-of-school suspension are black. The difference is even more dramatic when the proportion of black students who were suspended more than once is considered. 

District Bans Discussion of Ferguson Protests Citing Opinionated Teachers
The Edwardsville school district is a 30-minute drive from Ferguson, MO.  When classes resumed in Edwardsville, parents complained to the superintendent that some teachers were interjecting their own opinions into class discussion rather than objectively guiding discussion for students. The superintendent banned teachers from talking with their students about events in Ferguson. 

Teacher Raises Over $100,000 to Feed Ferguson Students
When schools are forced to unexpectedly close, many of the students go without the benefit of school-subsidized meals. One of four residents lives below the poverty line, and just under half the population lives below twice that level. A 5th grade teacher in Bahama, NC launched a fundraising campaign to benefit the St. Louis Area Foodbank in hopes the organization would offer food assistance to needy students. The initial goal was $80,000, but the initiative had raised over $110,000 with two days to go. 

Police Shootings Demonstrate Need for Social Workers to Press for Reforms
Recent, highly publicized cases of police using deadly force against people of color, including the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. on Aug. 9, underscore the need for the social work profession to call for reforms in the nation’s law enforcement systems. 

Youth M.O.V.E. Oregon Models Ground Breaking Approach to Healing After School Shooting
Almost two months after a 15 year-old freshman wounded a teacher and killed a fellow freshman, Youth M.O.V.E hosted a community response at Reynolds High School. Over two hundred participated in a “Virtual Reality Ropes Course” designed to help students reestablish positive feelings about the school building with a fun event while providing comfortable access to peer support specialists. 

Sandy Hook Educators Push to Make Background Checks a Campaign Issue
Teachers and other school staff at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. are making another push for firearms background check legislation ahead of the November midterm elections. Thirty-six educators who survived the 2012 mass school shooting crafted a letter they hope school employees across the country send to members of Congress. 

In School Shootings, ‘He Just Snapped’ Is a Myth
According to a psychologist and threat-assessment specialist, the explanation the school shooters “just snapped” is a myth. The path to a violent mass attack often starts with a relatable frustration that grows through cultivation and study by the attacker. And attackers usually experience "leakage" before they act, giving indications that they are planning to do something. He contends the idea of ‘just snapped’ undermines the importance of ongoing risk management and assessment. 

Promising New Approach Helps Curb Early Schizophrenia in Teens, Young Adults
A new approach is being used around the country to find and treat teens and young adults (most of whom are 12 to 25) with early signs of schizophrenia. The program provides support that includes resume and job search help, and field trips that get them out of the house and promote sociability. 

Inmates’ Kids Face Mental and Physical Health Problems Later in Life
A new study led by an assistant professor of epidemiology in the Brown University School of Public Health found that the likelihood  of poor physical and mental health among children with incarcerated parents increased by 18%. 

Recasting At-Risk Students as Leaders
One of the most important, yet frequently neglected, factors in motivating failing students to reach their maximum potential is leadership development for at-risk youth. 

Police in Los Angeles Schools to Curtail Arrests, Citations for Minor Offenses
The police force for the nation’s second largest school system will now send most students who get into trouble for fighting, bringing tobacco or alcohol to campus, and other minor offenses to counseling rather than issuing citations or arresting them. The new district policing policy is meant to reverse an era of zero tolerance that put using arrests and juvenile justice referrals ahead of counseling services and other interventions for struggling students. In 2013, nearly 95% of the 1,100 arrests made by the district’s police department were students of color. Black students made up less than 10% of the district, but comprised 31% of the arrests. 

Behavior Control Linked to Language Skills
In a series of studies published in the journals Development and Psychopathology and the Journal of Abnormal Psychology, researchers tracked children’s language development from preschool through the early teen-age years, comparing language skills with behavior issues rated by parents and teachers as well as the students’ performance on impulse-control tests. After controlling for students’ sex, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, prior levels of behavior problems, and academic performance in mathematics, reading, and short-term memory, researchers found students’ language skills predicted their later behavior problems more strongly than behavior problems predicted later language skills. 

Counting Homeless Youth 
It was 2013 when for the first time the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development established as a separate age category 18 to 24 year-olds experiencing homelessness. In prior years, there was only an 18 to 30 group. Communities across the country counted a total of 46,924 unaccompanied minors and young adults experiencing homelessness in 2013. They made up nearly 8% of the overall homeless population. 

Report to Congress on Runaway and Homeless Youth Program
The Family and Youth Services Bureau released its biannual report, which covers fiscal years 2012 and 2013. 

Parent-Student Education Needed for Homeless Families
Experts at a symposium in the American Psychological Association meeting argued homeless-education workers often do not link effective training with support for children and parents dealing with their own trauma. Structural limitations in family homeless shelters may leave a unique opening for schools to help homeless children and parents connect. 

All the Pointers You Need to Help Homeless Students Finish High School – And Go on to College
The National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth has developed the “Unaccompanied Youth Toolkit for Shelters and Service Providers, a series of tipsheets that is a primer for youth service professionals attempting to help keep homeless youth in school. 

Don’t Call Them Dropouts 
According to a recent report from America’s Promise Alliance and its Center for Promise at Tufts University, a start to helping more young people graduate would be to stop calling them dropouts. Calling them “nongraduates” or describing their situation as “interrupted enrollment” enable educators and youth service professionals to focus on how to get youth on track, rather than what when wrong. 

White House Announces Summit, New Efforts to Boost College Access
Building on its efforts to expand college opportunity for first-generation, low-income, and underrepresented students, the White House has scheduled a summit focused on K-12 and higher education partnerships to improve college persistence and completion for December 4. 

Republican National Committee Condemns New AP History Framework
The Republican National Committee is calling for a fight against the College Board’s new framework for Advanced Placement U.S. History, claiming that it “deliberately distorts and/or edits out important historical events”. A resolution adopted by the RNC at its summer meeting in Chicago demands the College Board delay for at least one year its plan to debut the framework in high schools this fall. 

Under Fire, College Board to ‘Clarify’ New U.S. History Framework
Stung by criticism that its new Advanced Placement U.S. History framework presents a slanted view of events, the College Board has taken the unusual step of releasing a practice exam. 

Math Fluency Linked to Changes in Brain
As children make the transition from finger-counting to retrieving math facts from memory, their brains begin to change, according to a study published this week in Nature Neuroscience. The findings could offer clues about how such processes break down for students with math learning disabilities.  

Does Having Teachers of Their Own Race Help Students Avoid Pregnancy?
Researchers wanted to know whether the presence of minority and female teachers in high schools lowers teen pregnancy rates among African-American youth. To test that hypothesis, high school teachers and a school district administrator from Georgia public schools were surveyed. They found that greater representation of African-Americans among teachers, both male and female, had a positive effect on African-American students. 

Timeline: Marking Demographic Changes in Schools
Changes in immigration laws dating back to the 1960s helped increase the flow of immigrants to the United States from Africa, Asia, Latin America and other parts of the globe. Many reports telegraphed the changes ahead for the nation’s schools. 

Indiana School Districts’ Obamacare Challenge Moves Forward
The state of Indiana and its school districts sued the federal government last fall, challenging certain aspects of President Obama’s signature expansion of health care. The districts contend they offer essential health coverage to most of their employees, but all have workers whom they consider part-time and not eligible for coverage, and who the federal law defines as full-time. A federal district judge rejected the motion by the federal government to dismiss the key claim in the lawsuit by the school districts. 

Death of Georgia H.S. Football Player Raises Over-Hydration Concerns 
A Douglas County (Georgia) High School football player passed away after collapsing at his home following a football practice the previous week. Though doctors have yet to determine the cause of death, they told the family that he had massive swelling around his brain. Family members suspect he over-hydrated following practice. 

High School Participation Rises for the First Time in Five Years 
According to the latest High School Athletics Participation Survey, participation in high school football rose for the first time in five years during the 2013-14 school year. Overall high school sports participation rose for the 25th straight year. 

Can Schools Respect Individuality Without Cultivating Narcissism in Students? 
A psychology professor at San Diego State University has concluded today’s students really are a little narcissistic and schools’ efforts to boost students’ self-esteem may be partially to blame. 

How to End Bullying: Participants Talk Action at National Summit
At a daylong summit  hosted by the U.S. Department of Education, officials and experts in education discussed how best to end bullying in schools. Several panelists said school culture is a key factor in bullying prevention. 

“KnowBullying” App Helps Parents and Others Prevent Bullying
The free smartphone app provides parents, caretakers, educators, and others with information and communication support to help prevent bullying and build resilience in children. 

Preparing and Responding to Cyberbullying: Tips for Law Enforcement 
The International Association of Chiefs of Police and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children have released a tip card with more than twenty recommendations to help law enforcement address and investigate cyberbullying in their communities. The resource highlights information from experts in the fields of law enforcement, youth trauma, mental health, computer crimes, victim services, and education and is available in English and Spanish. 

New Irish Movie Examines Impact of Suicide on Family and Friends
‘Davin’ examines the reaction to an Irishman’s friends and family to the news of his suicide. It is being made freely available online in 136 countries in advance of World Suicide Prevention Day 2014. 

White House Symposium Address Family-Engagement Practices Nationwide 
The White House Symposium on Transformative Family Engagement aimed to examine successful family-engagement practices and address the barriers that parents and caregivers might face when attempting to engage in their children’s education. It highlighted the difference between “traditional” family-engagement methods, where parents are not usually seen as partners in learning, and “transformative” engagement strategies, where parents have shared responsibility for the education of their children. 

New York Posts ‘Parents’ Bill of Rights’ to Safeguard Student Data 
New York education officials published a "parents' bill of rights" outlining the use of student data and how that information will be secured on the state education department's website. But the preliminary document, which was posted online July 29 as required by state law, puts much of the onus to protect student data on local school districts. According to a Westchester County, N.Y., Journal News story, all districts must post the parents' bill of rights on their websites and include the document in contracts with vendors that receive student data. 

More Parents Want Summer Learning Programs for Their Kids 
More than half of nearly 14,000 families surveyed in spring 2014 planned to put their kids in a learning program during the summer. The findings were based on data gathered for America After 3PM, a comprehensive report on children’s out-of-school time that the Afterschool Alliance will release in October. A preview of the data on summer learning was released in July. 

At Higher Achievement, Staff as Well as Students Get Writing Lessons
Academic rigor is the name of the game at Higher Achievement, an afterschool and summer program based in Washington, D.C. and serving 1,000 kids in four cities. The organization recently took the unusual step of hiring a writing coach for its own staff. 

Summit Weighs State of Early-Childhood Education 
At what was billed as the first Preschool Nation Summit (co-hosted by Los Angeles Universal Preschool, a nonprofit group working to provide access to quality early-childhood education programs in Los Angeles County and Scholastic Inc.), much of the conversation centered around the theme: how does the U.S. become a “preschool nation” or a country that believes all children deserve high-quality early-learning opportunities? 

Obama Administration Unveils New Preschool Grant Program 
The new, $250 million preschool development grant competition, which will be jointly administered by the U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services, represents a relatively modest down payment on the Obama administration’s much broader, $75 billion request for matching grants to help states cover the cost of a major expansion of early-childhood education programs.  

Jobs Report: An Education Imperative
The latest jobs report from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics documented 4.6 million unfilled jobs and over 9.7 million unemployed Americans. The report contributes to mounting evidence that the content-is-king, drill-and-kill approach employed by school systems over the past 20+ years has not translated into a thriving 21st century workforce. 

Job-Driven Partnership Resources for Local Workforce Investment Boards and Public Housing Authorities 
A new Partnership Toolkit has been developed that provides a range of resources and case studies that communities can use to develop sustainable local partnerships to help ensure that residents of public housing communities have access to labor market information, job training, job placement and support services offered through the workforce system. 

A Wet Route to School 
It is a watery journey to school for sixty-one teenagers in western India. They have no choice but to cross the Heran River. The trek, about 50 feet through shoulder-deep waters and then a three-mile walk, is the only practical route to their high school. 

   

Workshops & Webinars

 Implementing Evidence-Based Services (September 17, 2-3:15 p.m.)
A webinar presented by the Coalition for Juvenile Justice will explore how jurisdictions and providers of evidence-based programs can better serve youth in the juvenile justice system. Presenters will discuss how providers can create agency and customer buy-in, identify strategies to address funding and fidelity challenges, share lessons learned from state jurisdictions, and describe how to embed evidence-based services in juvenile justice systems. 

Threat Assessment Strategies for Schools and Higher Education (September 23, 2-3:30 p.m.) 
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, in collaboration with the International Association of Chiefs of Police are sponsoring a webinar during which presenters will provide an overview of threat assessment programs for both K-12 schools and high education campus settings, discuss school/campus threat assessment strategies and programs, and provide resources to meet standards of practice in threat assessment. 

Introduction to Women and Substance Use Disorders On-Line Course (On-Demand) 
A 12-hour, self-paced online course helps substance abuse and mental health professionals and other providers gain knowledge of women’s substance use treatment and recovery experiences and effective interventions. The free course offered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration includes current research, stories and scenarios, activities and resources for learning for more. 

Girls Matter! (On-Demand) 
Recordings from the webinar series addressing adolescent girls’ behavioral health are now available for viewing.. 

 

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