Family & Parental Involvement
NDTAC Toolkit: Facility Toolkit for Engaging Families in Their Child's Education at a Juvenile Justice Facility
This expanded version of NDTAC’s previous guide to family involvement provides multiple tools for facilities looking to better engage families. Tools 1–5, including a family guide, sample letters, a tip sheet, and a questionnaire, are intended for distribution to students' families. Tools 6–8, including a facility tip sheet and planning tool, are intended for use by facility staff. All are customizable to meet the unique needs of each facility and the families it serves.
NDTAC Guide: Family Guide to Getting Involved in Your Child's Education at a Juvenile Justice Facility
This guide presents practical strategies that a family can use in building a relationship with their child's facility school program and keeping their child on track to complete school and become a successful young adult. This guide is both a stand-alone document and Tool 1 in NDTAC's Facility Toolkit for Engaging Families.
Strategies, Practices, and Programs
NDTAC Guide: Working With Families of Children in the Juvenile Justice and Corrections Systems: A Guide for Education Program Leaders, Principals,and Building Administrators
This NDTAC guidebook presents strategies to help increase family involvement in the institutions that educate youth who are neglected or delinquent.
Safety, Fairness, Stability: Repositioning Juvenile Justice and Child Welfare to Engage Families and Communities
This Center for Juvenile Justice Reform paper provides a historical perspective on family involvement; proposes a pathway for juvenile justice, child welfare, and other systems to work together to strengthen youth connections to family and community; and includes tools to assist with implementation.
This 2010 bulletin from the Child Welfare Information Gateway describes the benefits of family engagement in the child welfare system and includes strategies for meaningful engagement, a list of resources, and examples of implementation at both State and local levels.
This Child Welfare League of America newsletter article describes the Juvenile Relational Inquiry Tool, a tool designed to help juvenile justice staff work with youth to identify the strengths and resources of their families to support them during incarceration and after return to the community.
Developed by the National Wraparound Initiative and its partners, this online compendium provides a comprehensive set of resources for all aspects of wraparound services—from theory to hands-on tools developed by experts in the field. The "family partner" and his or her role in wraparound is discussed throughout the resource, most notably in Section 4 and Appendix 6d.
Collaboration in the Juvenile Justice System and Youth Serving Agencies: Improving Prevention, Providing More Efficient Services, and Reducing Recidivism for Youth With Disabilities
As explored in a report by Peter Leone, Mary Quinn, and David Osher, this article summarizes the possibilities of collaboration between youth services and the juvenile justice system to effectively reduce juvenile delinquency.
This article written by the Pacer Center discusses the needs of parents of incarcerated youth, identifies obstacles to parent involvement, and provides tips for staff to promote family involvement in facilities.
Strengthening America's Families: Exemplary Parenting and Family Strategies for Delinquency Prevention
This Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention article highlights risk factors to delinquency and explores promising strategies for prevention, including those that focus on parents. The article identifies characteristics of successful programs and includes a description of each program, including Functional Family Therapy, the Strengthening Family Program, Structural Family Therapy, and Treatment Foster Care.
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) Model Programs Guide is a database of over 200 evidence-based programs. This database can be used to find programs that cover a continuum of youth services from prevention through reentry. To view programs related to family involvement, click on Program Types, then Parent Training or Family Therapy.
Involving parents and family in a student's schooling can be an ongoing challenge for youth who are neglected and delinquent or at risk and placed outside of their home and community. This article describes practical strategies for establishing communication and building relationships among the school or facility, students, and family members.
Experience in the field shows that involving families throughout the process of a youth's incarceration is not an easy undertaking but is possible. This NDTAC article describes areas of opportunity for family involvement, as well as current practices in three States.
Prepared by the Juvenile Law Center, this guide is designed to help family members of youth with disabilities in Pennsylvania better understand and navigate the State's juvenile justice process and make informed decisions. Parents in other States may also find the information in this guide helpful.
Written by the Maryland Coalition of Families for Children's Mental Health, this handbook was designed for families of children in the juvenile justice system. It was written to help families understand this complex and confusing system and participate in the decisions made regarding their children.
A synopsis of a research brief by the National Center for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice on the benefits of collaboration between families and those in the juvenile justice system.
This summary of a Legal Aid Justice Center report highlights the challenges associated with successfully transitioning students from secure care environments back to their community schools as well as the planning, collaboration, and family involvement that help make it happen.
This National Juvenile Justice Network guide offers advice and tips to help advocacy groups leverage families as partners in juvenile justice advocacy. The guide outlines easily implementable practices and provides examples from the field.
This Campaign for Youth Justice guide offers family members concrete strategies, tips, and activities to help them organize families and communities and become effective advocates for reforming the juvenile and criminal justice systems.
Legal Requirements & Legislation
U.S. Department of Education's Title I, Part D, Nonregulatory Guidance states that "an SA [State agency] must assure that it will work with parents to secure their assistance in improving their children's and youth's educational achievement and, as appropriate, preventing further involvement in delinquent activities." Further information is provided in the Nonregulatory Guidance document (PDF).
For more information, see Policy & Law
Experts have found that family involvement is correlated with successful transition and reduced recidivism. This NDTAC Technical Issue Brief provides the research basis for involving families in the juvenile justice process.
This article by the Regional Research Institute for Human Services discusses findings from a multistate prevalence study that explored the services provided to youth with mental health needs in the juvenile justice system and obtained family perspectives about the care and treatment of these youth.
Tools & Toolkits
This inventory, prepared by the Mental Health/Juvenile Justice Action Network Family Involvement Workgroup, provides resources, tips, and information to help families navigate the juvenile justice system. The inventory also presents resources to assist juvenile justice staff and policymakers in the reformation of policies and procedures to improve how systems interact with family and youth. To view this document in proper format, right-click the page, then select Rotate Clockwise.
This online, easy-to-use tool from Casey Family Programs allows youth to assess their strengths in life skills, such as money management, work and study habits, self-care, and independent living.
The National Resource Center for Permanancy and Family Connections provides this online tool for child welfare program staff on practices, programs, and resources they can use to assess and improve their family engagement efforts.
Events & Presentations
NDTAC WEBINARS & PRESENTATIONS
This NDTAC Webinar provides information on NDTAC’s "A Family Guide to Getting Involved With Correctional Education," and features constructive examples from the PACER Center on ways families can be engaged with their children throughout the juvenile justice process, at the school, court, and facility levels.
An introduction to NDTAC's guide, "Working with Families of Children in the Juvenile Justice and Corrections System," this Webinar highlights some benefits of and strategies for increasing family involvement. In addition, practitioners from the Baltimore City Juvenile Justice Center's Community and Family Resource Center share initiatives for engaging families.
In this NDTAC Webinar, presenters discuss the importance of family involvement for youth in the juvenile justice system, explore current programs and initiatives, outline the three tiers of family involvement, and list possible funding sources.
In this presentation from the 12th Annual Conference on Advancing School Mental Health in Orlando, FL, Trina and David Osher provide research and strategies around parent involvement and family-driven, youth-guided care. The presentation covers roles, challenges, models, and capacity building around the topic of family involvement.
ADDITIONAL EVENTS & PRESENTATIONS
A Multi-State Study of Mental Health Prevalence and Services for Justice-Involved Youth: Findings and Implications
In this presentation from the 19th Annual Systems of Care Conference, Trina Osher presents findings and recommendations based on multistate family focus groups that explored the adequacy of mental health services provided to children in the juvenile justice system.
This Technical Assistance Partnership presentation on parent leadership highlights the guiding principles of family-driven care; helps participants think through the effectiveness of parent leadership; and provides possible strategies, tools, and activities to help participants cultivate parent leadership.
The Campaign for Youth Justice’s Family Resource Center provides families with links to information on the student transfer process, advocacy contact information by State, and other parent tools for getting involved in the movement against the prosecution of youth in adult courts.
The Family Justice Program at the Vera Institute of Justice has several online resources to help correctional facilities better involve families in the juvenile justice process. This page provides research findings and links to the program's family-based projects.
The National Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health advocates for children with mental and behavioral health needs and their families. This site includes a variety of resources organized by role and topic, including information on Parent Support Provider certification.
The PACER Center Web site provides resources and information for families of children and youth with disabilities. The Programs and Resources page includes links to related programs, publications, policy, newsletters, workshops, Webinars, and Web sites.
The Technical Assistance Partnership for Child and Family Mental Health's Family Involvement Web page lists resources around family involvement and describes the relevant assistance available through the organization, including its family involvement community of practice.