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The juvenile justice system in Los Angeles County has been broken for too long. The outdated, institutional, and sometimes harmful camps that house youth labeled “delinquent” have been just one glaring example. But beyond the system, reform efforts themselves have suffered at times – whether from mistrust, or too often happening in a vacuum or behind closed doors.
A Culture of Care for All: Envisioning the LA Model describes a new approach for treating youth who incarcerated. This report, written by Hailly T.N. Korman (Bellwether Education Partners) and Carly B. Dierkhising (California State University – Los Angeles) captures nearly two years of thought and collaboration by more than 100 stakeholders coordinated by CDF-CA to articulate a shared vision of a new model of juvenile justice in Los Angeles, known as the LA Model. The LA Model has ten essential elements and is replicable across the country. It is both informed and innovative: It is built on the latest research as it draws on promising practices across the country.
LBUSD is the third largest school district in California - with an annual budget of over $1 billion and a diverse group of almost 78,000 students. From 2011 to 2015, suspensions decreased by 41 percent in California schools, and by 53 percent in LBUSD. This good news begs the question - what are schools doing differently to account for the decline in suspensions? Are a greater number of students ultimately accessing instruction in a positive and engaging learning environment instead of getting pushed out of their schools? Or are students experiencing a different kind of alienation from their school communities that has replaced suspensions?
Untold Stories Behind One of America's Best Urban School Districts focuses on recent education equity and racial justice trends in LBUSD related to school climate. The report explores how students, especially students of color and high-need students — low-income, English Learner, special education, and foster youth — have been impacted in recent years by exclusionary school climate practices. The findings and recommendations in this report seek to encourage more district-community collaboration that supports student learning and a universal pathway to college and career for LBUSD students—particularly high-need students.
CDF Freedom Schools: Communities, families, parents, and young adults coming together to give children an unforgettable educational experience. Get involved.
"While I continue to face challenges at home head on, at school I remain focused and committed to achieving success. The CDF Beat the Odds scholarship represents this success." - Vincent Zamarripa, 2015 Beat the Odds Honoree.
Statement from Children’s Defense Fund-California on Governor’s 2017-18 Budget Proposal
January 10, 2017, Children's Defense Fund - California
A Repeal of ACA Will Harm Children and Families in Unprecedented Ways
December 9, 2016, Media Release
A Special Message to Millennials From Marian Wright Edelman
November 1, 2016, Blog Post