Top Headlines for 1/10

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Child Welfare

Catholic Charities of Springfield, Ill., will go on serving children and families, reports Doug Finke of the State Journal-Register. The agency lost all of its state contracts to provide child welfare services after opposing the idea of licensing foster and adoptive parents who were joined in civil unions.

Steve White of Nebraska.tv interviewed foster parent Pamela Allen, who says she and other foster parents are frustrated by the state’s efforts to reform through privatization.

In Arizona, writes the editorial board of the Arizona Republic, reform of the child welfare system is a marathon and not a sprint. There is a lively exchange in the comments section below involved readers and Richard Wexler, the executive director of the National Coalition for Child Protection Reform.

Education/Jobs

Christian Boone of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports on a group of parents fighting to protect an area after-school program.

Juvenile Justice

James Swift, writing for Juvenile Justice Information Exchange, reports on where the GOP candidates stand on juvenile justice and education issues.

Violence against juveniles has declined significantly in Baltimore in recent years as juvenile arrests have dropped and student graduations increased, reports Justin Fenton of the Baltimore Sun. Baltimore Public Schools CEO Andrés Alonso tells Fenton that the perception of teens in the city has lagged behind the reality.

A Kentucky legislator has introduced a bill that would prohibit children 10 or younger from being charged with criminal offenses.
Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones' administration has awarded a $344,000 emergency contract to address security concerns at the Juvenile Detention Center, reports Will Jones of the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Lots of headlines recently on the fallout from the Luzerne County juvenile court scandal, which involved two judges steering the county to build two juvenile detention centers that they then filled with many low-level offenders:

An attorney for two juvenile centers involved in the scandal argued that the $17.75 million settlement in the scandal-related lawsuit should not be applied evenly in all of the cases of juveniles who faced disgraced judge Mark Ciavarella, reports Sheena Delazio of the Times Leader.

Meanwhile, reports Dave Janoski of the Citizens Voice, taxpayers will foot the bill for kids-for-cash judge Ciavarella’s appeal of his racketeering conviction, a federal appeals judge ruled today.
Two years after it was demonized for failing to halt abuses of juveniles’ rights committed by Ciavarella,  reports Terrie Morgan-Besecker of the Times Leader, the office has been lauded for significant progress it has made in addressing issues that led to the problems.