College Ready, Career Prepared: Foster Youth and Higher Education

College Ready, Career Prepared: Foster Youth and Higher Education

College Ready, Career Prepared: Foster Youth and Higher Education
On this week’s podcast, we discuss the return of federal earmarks and which youth and family organizations benefitted, Florida’s new Family Navigator plan, and the findings of the first Voice of The Foster Care Community survey.
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Guest Interview
Instead of a guest interview, we’re featuring a great conversation on connecting youth in foster care to higher education and careers. This discussion was hosted by our team at Fostering Families Today, a bimonthly magazine delivered straight into the homes of foster and kinship caregivers, and was moderated by Ivory Bennet, who has been a guest on this podcast before and served as a special advisor in the creation of the recent special issue of Fostering Families Today entitled College Ready, Career Prepared: A Guide to Postsecondary Education for Youth in Foster Care.
Reading Room
America’s New Juvenile Justice Leader; Reasonable Efforts in Child Welfare with Judge Len Edwards
On this week’s podcast, we discuss the Justice Department’s entry into the legal battle on trans medicine for youth; Biden’s new juvenile justice leader, decarceration advocate Liz Ryan; and the first state in decades to pursue lowering the age of its juvenile justice system.
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Guest Interview
Judge Len Edwards joins us to talk about the “reasonable efforts” standards in child welfare policy, his book on that topic, the rise of relatives in the system, and the future of the Indian Child Welfare Act. 
Reading Room
Stuck Kids: How Foster Youth End Up In Hospitals for Months
On this week’s podcast, we discuss some of the significant changes to federal child welfare policy proposed in President Biden’s budget for the next fiscal year, which includes new incentives to prioritize kinship care placements and more generous federal support for foster care prevention.  
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Guest Interview
Erin Dorrien, vice president of policy for the Maryland Hospital Association and Carrie Etheridge, director of social work at Sheppard Pratt, join to talk about why foster youth are getting stuck in hospitals long after such a restrictive sitting is necessary, a problem that seems to be very acute in Maryland but we are also hearing is a major capacity symptom in other states as well.
Reading Room
Wellness In The Workforce with Bridgette Carr and Vivek Sankaran
On this week’s podcast we discuss what’s happened in Ohio since the death of Ma’Khia Bryant a year ago, how child welfare might figure into California’s ideas around reparations, Connecticut’s new approach to helping families, and more.
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Guest Interview
Bridgette Carr and Vivek Sankaran, who both lead legal clinics at the University of Michigan Law School, join to discuss the importance of organizational support for the wellbeing of people who work in trauma-filled professions.
Reading Room
On this week’s podcast we discuss a new kinship prioritization in Washington, New York gets sued (twice), privatization ends in Nebraska, and controversial new legislation in Alabama and Tennessee. 
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Guest Interview
Kim Clifton of HALOS in South Carolina, joins us to talk about kinship care, what federal funding for kinship navigators could mean for her state, and hidden foster care.
Reading Room
Homeless in Foster Care: What Would Really Keep Foster Youth from Sleeping in Offices
Today on The Imprint Weekly Podcast we feature a great conversation that Fostering Media Connections hosted last month called “Homeless in Foster Care: What Would Really Keep Foster Youth from Sleeping in Offices.”
As the title suggests, the motivation for this discussion was the reality that youth living in foster care are sleeping in offices, sometimes in hotels or even in rare cases cars, with systems struggling to find more appropriate shelter for them…and all of these kids had been removed from their home at one point or another due to safety concerns, which makes leaving them in such an unstable position is truly failure in its most clear form. 
This has gotten attention of late because several states saw the number of youth in this situation increase during the last year or so, likely in part to the pandemic and its impact on the child welfare workforce and more generally on foster care capacity. 
But this is not by any means a new problem in child welfare. This conversation was meant to discuss not the emergency solutions for it, but rather the upstream issues with how child welfare systems proceed that end up leaving youth open to these circumstances.
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Guest Interview
This conversation includes  Molly Tierney of Accenture, who worked in child welfare leadership in Illinois and in Baltimore; BJ Walker, former director of the state child welfare systems in Georgia and Illinois, and Gary Ivory, the President of Youth Advocate Programs, which for decades has been focused on serving as a community alternative to things incarceration and foster care.
03/28/2022
Raising the Age, Cleaning the Slate with Jason Smith
We discuss several headlines related to litigation in the child welfare space, including two states exiting class-action lawsuits after decades and a new legal center aimed at fighting removals into foster care. Also: MacKenzie Scott drops unrestricted grants on youth organizations, and a great new visualization tool on racial and ethnic disproportionality in foster care. 
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Child Welfare in The Early Pandemic; Remembering Edgar Cahn, Juvenile Justice Visionary
On this week’s podcast, we try to tie three different sets of federally collected numbers together in regard to child welfare during the earliest phase of the COVID-19 pandemic between March and September 2020, when lockdowns were ubiquitous, schools were mostly closed and vaccines were still in the offing. We also talk about some well-timed research on the nexus between income support for poor parents and child well-being.
Later in the podcast we talk what could be the first collateral consequence of last year’s Supreme Court decision on faith-based discrimination in child welfare; where things stand with a court challenge to the Indian Child Welfare Act and auditing L.A.’s child welfare agency. We end with a discussion of Edgar Cahn, a giant in the legal community whose legacy includes two innovative ideas in juvenile justice.
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The Best of The Imprint Weekly Podcast, 2021 Edition
We had some amazing guests join us on The Imprint Weekly Podcast this year, and we reviewed the entire 2021 archive to bring you clips from some of the very best! This episode includes clips of 20 interviews from this year. 
If you enjoy this podcast, or the great work our reporters do at The Imprint and Fostering Families Today, please consider making a donation. And if you do so this month, during Newsmatch, your donation will get doubled!
Fostering Media Connections is very lucky to have some terrific philanthropic supporters, advertisers and sponsors, and subscribers to our business and policy section that help make this organization go. But we really cannot do it without donors like you who read our stuff, listen to our podcasts and attend our online events. 
There are tons of really great nonprofit, independent news outlets to support out there, and we hope you consider us one of them. To give today it’s easy! Visit imprintnews.org/donate. 
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Beverly Jones, child operating officer for Lutheran Child and Family Services of Illinois
Takkeem Morgan, founder of Foster Together Indiana
Josh Gupta-Kagan, professor, University of South Carolina School of Law
Dr. Bruce Perry, founder and senior fellow at the Child Trauma Academy
Rae Baker, director of the Minnesota Prison Doula Project
Kris Henning, professor, Georgetown Law
Rebecca Nagle, host of the award-winning This Land podcast
Corey Best, consultant, Mining for Gold
Irene Clements, former president, National Foster Parent Association
Lisa Thurau, founder, Strategies for Youth
12/20/2021
How Foster Youth Navigate the Holidays
This week’s episode is an edited-for-length version of a discussion that Fostering Media Connections recently conducted called “Navigating the Holidays.” Kim Hansel, the editor of our Fostering Families Today magazine, moderated this terrific panel of four former foster youth —  Raquel Wilson, Tamar Sebesta, Jessica Castillo, and Daniel Bisuano — in a conversation about what the holidays can be life for young people with lived experience, and what foster and resource parents should know and expect during this time of year.
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Healers in the System: From the Health Field to Child Welfare Leadership
Deborah Shropshire and Charlene Wong are career pediatricians, and Terry Stigdon is a registered nurse who specializes in pediatrics. All three are now leading state child welfare systems in Oklahoma, North Carolina and Indiana, respectively.
This episode of The Imprint Weekly Podcast features a conversation hosted by Fostering Media Connections in which Accenture’s Molly Tierney and The Imprint’s John Kelly talk to the three women about the differences between the health and child welfare fields, what child welfare systems could learn from or adapt from health systems, and what they see coming in the next five years for the field.
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Terry Stigdon, Indiana Department of Child Services
Deborah Shropshire, Oklahoma Department of Human Services
Charlene Wong, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services
11/22/2021
Bridge to Adulthood: A Discussion on California’s Extended Foster Care System
California became one of the first states to extend foster care when the federal Fostering Connections to Success Act became law, offering states the opportunity to extend foster care to the age of 21 with financial assistance. Last year, The Imprint produced an in-depth series looking at the first decade of the program in California, exploring what holes still existed in a new safety net that overall has helped ease the transition to adulthood for teens in the system. 
This episode of The Imprint Weekly Podcast features a panel discussion hosted by Fostering Media Connections on the state of extended foster care in the Golden State. Imprint reporter Sara Tiano moderates a discussion that features perspectives from two young leaders who experienced the system before and after the extension to 21; an expert in California child welfare policy; and one of the nation’s leading researchers on the experience of older youth in foster care.
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07/25/2021
What Happened to You? Talking Child and Family Trauma with Bruce Perry
This week, The Imprint Weekly Podcast presents our in-depth interview with Dr. Bruce Perry, recent co-author of the bestseller “What Happened to You” with Oprah Winfrey. Perry has spent years building the knowledge base around understanding and addressing the impact of child trauma on kids and adults. 
Perry discussed his new book, his views on child welfare and its approach to engaging parents, the potential of the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics, and more.
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Poverty Reduction? Only if You File Taxes
On this week’s episode of The Imprint Weekly Podcast we discuss new proposals for abolishing “family policing” and creating a community-led parallel system for family support; lowered expectations on L.A. juvenile justice reform; and a surprising outcome among states that have raised the age since 2007. Jen Burdick of Community Legal Services of Philadelphia joins to talk about her organization’s massive push to help clients file tax returns this year to prevent them from missing out on major new family supports that some believe could halve child poverty in America. 
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Transformation Points: Redesigning Child Welfare to Help Youth and Families Thrive
Throughout the country, jurisdictions are rethinking all aspects of the child welfare system, to make it more community-based, youth-centered, and responsive to families’ and communities’ needs. This podcast episode, originally recorded as an online event, features ideas from thought leaders in the field about how to move the needle.
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Guest Interview
We were joined for this discussion by Jerry Milner, former head of the US Children’s Bureau; Kelley Fong, a researcher who has done some amazing work on abuse and neglect reporting; Brian Blalock, head of New Mexico’s child welfare system; Sixto Cancel, the founder of the nonprofit Think of Us; and Barret Johnson of the child welfare tech company Binti, who discussed how improved technological infrastructure can help usher in such endeavors.
05/30/2021
Confronting Racism in Child Welfare Organizations
On this week’s podcast, reporter Julie Reynolds Martinez drops in to discuss a two-part series published by The Imprint and Voices of Monterey Bay about Corey Glassman, who was convicted as a teen for the brutal killing of a classmate. Glassman’s path through the incarceration system to recent parole epitomizes the changing tides in public attitude and policy about horrific crimes committed by youth.
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Big Questions for Child Welfare: Foster Care, Einstein, and Insanity
In our final installment of Big Questions for Child Welfare, Accenture’s Molly Tierney and Daniel Heimpel of Fostering Media Connections reflect on Tierney’s 2014 Ted Talk, at which 
she received a standing ovation for a speech that questioned the underpinnings of what she described as the child welfare industrial complex, and measured the use of foster care up to Einstein’s definition of insanity. 
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Guest Interview
Daniel Heimpel is the founder of Fostering Media Connections and the publisher of The Imprint. Molly Tierney is the child welfare lead for Accenture, and the former child welfare director for the City of Baltimore.
04/11/2021
On this week’s podcast we discuss a portal to federal aid for former foster youth; a big juvenile probation reform proposal in California; and new leadership at a pioneer group for elevating parent voice in child welfare. 
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Big Questions for Child Welfare: How Do We Get Upstream?
The Imprint Weekly Podcast is releasing bonus episodes featuring our publisher, Daniel Heimpel, and Molly Tierney, the child welfare lead at Accenture and former child welfare director for Baltimore. 
On this episode, the two friends discuss  the growing call for child welfare to paddle “upstream,” investing more money in keeping families together and less on splitting them apart. What will it take to improve our prevention of abuse and neglect in America? And should that work be done by child welfare agencies, other parts of government, or something entirely different?
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Guest Interview
Daniel Heimpel is the founder of Fostering Media Connections and the publisher of The Imprint. Molly Tierney is the child welfare lead for Accenture, and the former child welfare director for the City of Baltimore.
03/22/2021
On this week’s podcast, we discuss Washington’s limitations on life without parole, “raising the floor” on juvenile arrests, rules of the road for foster youth COVID relief and prioritizing foster parents for vaccines.
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Big Questions for Child Welfare: The Biden Agenda
Over the next few weeks, we will be releasing bonus episodes on Thursdays that will be conversations between The Imprint’s publisher Daniel Heimpel and Molly Tierney, the child welfare lead at Accenture and former director of Baltimore’s child welfare system.
On today’s episode, Tierney and Heimpel talk about the Biden administration, which succeeds an erratic period for child welfare in America under former President Donald Trump. The Trump administration is responsible for intentionally separating families at the nation’s Southern border, and for proposals that would gut the social safety net. It also unleashed federal resources for legal support to system-involved parents and children, and expanded federal child welfare spending to include much more money for efforts to keep families together.
Tierney and Heimpel talk about what a good comprehensive agenda for child welfare under Biden could mean.
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Guest Interview
Daniel Heimpel is the founder of Fostering Media Connections and the publisher of The Imprint. Molly Tierney is the child welfare lead for Accenture, and the former child welfare director for the City of Baltimore.
03/08/2021
On this week’s podcast we discuss testing universal basic income for youth aging out of the foster care system, a Minnesota law aimed at addressing race disproportionality, and the new head of the U.S. Children’s Bureau.
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Big Questions for Child Welfare: Racial Bias and Caseworker Training
Over the next few weeks, we will be releasing  bonus episodes on Thursdays that will be conversations between The Imprint’s publisher Daniel Heimpel and Molly Tierney, the child welfare lead at Accenture and former director of Baltimore’s child welfare system.  
On today’s episode they discuss racial biases and the child welfare workforce with Karen Baynes-Dunning, acting president of the Southern Poverty Law Center and former juvenile court judge.  The three explore interesting lessons on this issue learned from testing of a virtual caseworker training platform. 
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Guest Interview
Daniel Heimpel is the founder of Fostering Media Connections and the publisher of The Imprint. Molly Tierney is the child welfare lead for Accenture, and the former child welfare director for the City of Baltimore. Karen Bayens-Dunning is a former juvenile court judge and the acting president of the Southern Poverty Law Center.
02/22/2021
Building the Case for Rewiring Child Welfare
On this week’s episode we discuss new access to birth certificates for adoptees in New York with reporter Michael Fitzgerald, more job training efforts for system-involved teens and young adults in California and Nevada, and a national campaign to end the use of solitary confinement for youth.
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BONUS PODCAST: Reform is the Destination. Tech is the Road
Improving casework. Identifying and addressing racial disproportionality and disparity. Reducing the use of foster care. More knowledge about what works to prevent abuse and neglect.
Whatever you think is the most pressing reform in child welfare, technology is a key facet of solving the problem. In December, The Imprint hosted an online discussion about technology’s critical role in improving the child welfare system. 
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Guest Interview
The Imprint was joined for this discussion by Molly Tierney, child welfare industry lead for Accenture, and Scooter Ward, former deputy chief information officer of the Washington, D.C. Child and Family Services Agency
01/11/2021
Ending Homelessness for Youth Leaving Foster Care
2020 was the first full year for the Foster Youth to Independence initiative (FYI), which helps secure stable housing and self-sufficiency services for young adults aging out of foster care. 
This week’s podcast was recorded live on Zoom in early December, and features a discussion about FYI’s first year and what comes next as the initiative recently became enshrined into law.
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Guest Interview
We’re joined for the conversation about Foster Youth to Independence by Ruth White and Jamole Callahan, two chief architects of the initiative, and Love Williams, an early participant in the initiative.
01/04/2021
The Pandemic’s Heartbreaking Toll on Separated Families
On this week’s podcast we discuss the child welfare package passed by Congress as part of the coronavirus relief deal, new studies on life after foster care, and a temporary fix in Ohio on kinship support.
BONUS: This episode features music from the Unsung program, which helps youth in juvenile settings learn to perform, record and produce songs.
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Guest Interview
We’re joined by Melissa Thompson, Melanie Jordan and Cam Lundstrom of the Office of Respondent Parent Counsel in Colorado for a sobering discussion on how the pandemic has impacted the cases of parents with children in foster care.
12/28/2020
This Year on The Imprint Weekly Podcast
Description: It’s been 11 weeks since we launched The Imprint Weekly Podcast. On this episode, Imprint Senior Editor John Kelly and producer Christine Ongjoco have put together a collection of clips from interviews with our first year of guests. 
Thanks to everyone who listened, subscribed, or joined us on the podcast in 2020. Happy New Year to all!
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Ohio Medicaid Director Maureen Corcoran
Lisa Ling, host of CNN’s This is Life with Lisa Ling
Daniel Heimpel, publisher of The Imprint
Campaign for Youth Justice CEO Marcy Mistrett
Sara Tiano, reporter for The Imprint
Nora McCarthy and Jeanette Vega, Rise
12/21/2020
15 Years and Rise-ing
On this week’s podcast we discuss the immediate fallout from The Imprint’s investigation into California’s use of out-of-state youth facilities, the rise in child welfare cases in Los Angeles during the pandemic, rapid testing regulations getting lifted and a big result for the workforce development program Year Up. 
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Guest Interview
We’re joined by Nora McCarthy and Jeanette Vega of Rise, a New York City organization dedicated to supporting parents involved in child welfare cases, about the organization’s first 15 years in the world.
12/13/2020
On this week’s podcast, we discuss the major investigation of California’s use of an embattled for-profit to care for kids out of state, trendlines since New York “raised the age,” and a new foster youth film channel.
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Guest Interview
We’re joined by Campaign for Youth Justice CEO Marcy Mistrett to discuss the end of the campaign, which closes its doors this month, and the past 15 years in the fight to keep youth out of adult courts and facilities.
12/06/2020
On this week’s podcast we discuss the potential legislative aftermath of a suicide in a Wisconsin juvenile facility, new Family First Act approvals, and how a rapid home-testing strategy could affect juvenile justice and child welfare systems.
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Guest Interview
We’re joined by renowned journalist Lisa Ling and Imprint Publisher Daniel Heimpel to discuss Ling’s recent documentary covering the crossroads of opioid addiction and child welfare in her ongoing CNN documentary series.
11/30/2020
Moving Upstream on Child Mental Health
On this week’s podcast we discuss the soaring cost of incarceration in New York’s juvenile justice system, a landmark settlement on how child welfare agencies support disabled parents, and a new tutoring plan available for thousands of foster youth in the country.
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Guest Interview
We’re joined by Ohio Medicaid Director Maureen Corcoran to talk about her state’s new plan to change mental health services for youth and young adults and prevent unnecessary child welfare and foster care cases.
11/24/2020
Can California Erase Racism at Trial?
Description: On this week’s podcast we cover a lawsuit over equal support for relative caregivers in Ohio, LGBTQ youth in foster care, how foster homes are doing during the coronavirus pandemic, and New Jersey’s stimulus relief for older youth in care.
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Guest Interview
We’re joined by California State Assemblymember Ash Kalra about his California Racial Justice Act, which was recently signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom and attempts to provide what might be an unprecedented check on racial bias during trials and at sentencing.
11/16/2020
Measuring Family Separation, and the Biden Child Welfare Agenda
On this week’s podcast we provide an overview of the Who Cares project, The Imprint’s annual data collection on foster youth and foster homes in America. We also discuss some local and state election results, and what’s going on with the Biden transition team. 
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Guest Interview
We’re joined by Melissa Carter, executive director of the Barton Child Law and Policy Center at Emory University, and Andy Barclay, statistician for the group Fostering Court Improvement, to discuss a new metric to track family separation in America. Imprint columnist Vivek Sankaran joins to discuss what he hopes a Biden-Harris child welfare policy will look like.
11/09/2020
A Pandemic Plan To Keep Foster Youth Plugged In
On this week’s podcast we cover state and local ballot measures with big consequences for children and families, the Fulton v. City of Philadelphia Supreme Court case, and an interesting new program in Ohio aimed at preventing parents from relinquishing custody of their kids. 
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Guest Interview
Our guest this week is Serita Cox, co-founder of iFoster, on how her organization fueled a partnership that produced thousands of laptops and cell phones for current and former foster youth whose educations were disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic.
11/02/2020
The Abolitionists
On this week’s podcast we look at a few interesting ballot initiatives that voters will decide on tomorrow, the plan to rewrite juvenile justice in Los Angeles, and how child support is used by states to offset the cost of welfare and foster care. 
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Guest Interview
Alan Dettlaff and Kristen Weber, co-founders of the upEND Movement, join us to talk about how the campaign came together and what they mean by seeking the abolition of the modern child welfare system.
10/26/2020
Detained for Skipping Schoolwork
It’s a reporter-palooza! Journalist Roxanna Asgarian joins Senior Editor John Kelly to discuss her recent investigative report for The Imprint about the culture of silence on abuse inside Texas child welfare facilities. We also discuss Florida and privatization, and the recent spate of settlements in child welfare class-action lawsuits.
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Guest Interview
ProPublica reporter Jodi Cohen joins us to discuss her story from the summer about a Michigan teenager who was locked up by a juvenile court judge for skipping a virtual class. Cohen’s piece is perhaps now the most famous example of a long-debated federal policy: the “valid court order exception.”
10/19/2020
We discuss the issue of credit for schoolwork done in juvenile justice facilities, plans for a universal suicide screening for foster youth and expansion of a homelessness prevention plan for young adults aging out of care.
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Guest Interview
Sharon McDaniel, founder of A Second Chance, Inc. and president of the group Black Administrators in Child Welfare, joins us to discuss child welfare in the time of coronavirus and what it means for a system to be “anti-racist.”
10/12/2020
In the inaugural episode of The Imprint Weekly Podcast, Senior Editor John Kelly discussed the coronavirus relief package, a new state joining the Family First Act, and the looming end to California’s notorious state-run juvenile prisons.
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