ACE research shows a strong historical pattern of criminality in families of child delinquents. Using Cohen’s estimates, we calculate the multi-generational “multiplier effect” to be between $3.4 and $11.5 million. In these families, criminality is likely to grow exponentially.Details
America has long failed to understand and address the underlying issues that drive behaviors of traumatized children. Many end up suspended, expelled or in juvenile justice. Teen and preteen pregnancies are significantly more common among them than with their peers also.Details
Grace, a Black 15-year old who was sent to a juvenile detention center for failure to submit schoolwork.
In an email to Grace’s caseworker, her teacher stated that Grace was “not out of alignment with most of my other students.”
Tens of thousands of children have struggled to adjust to the online learning environment the coronavirus created. ProPublica cites 15,000 high schoolers in Los Angeles alone failing to log in or complete schoolwork. Yet, a judge presiding for Oakland County Family Court Division, ruled in May that not completing schoolwork violated Grace’s probation.
It’s impossible to determine the frequency of cases like Grace’s, but one thing is clear. Children’s health and safety must be prioritized. We will continue urging states to stop admissions and to release kids from juvenile facilities. No child should be in juvenile detention for missing homework.Details
This JAMA article indicates that we continue to underestimate the prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders by a factor as high as 10. If this is true, 5% of American children are born with a wide range of permanent and lifelong physical & mental health deficits that will result in school & life failure and premature death.
Most people in the fields of education, law enforcement or social work know the explosive growth of mental health issues of children in their in schools, homes and squad cars. We are all becoming mental health workers.
The greater and sadder truth reflected in these studies is the continued minimizing, euphemizing and obfuscation of how America treats its children and troubled young families.
The ground truth is that children can’t speak for themselves, the media sees this as a negative story and the institutions involved benefit through non-transparency and under-reporting.
These sad truths insure generation after generation of child abuse and children born of drug and fetal alcohol abuse. The cost to society and taxpayers is horrendous. We would all benefit by understanding these grim truths.Details
Federal Funding, Zero Tolerance and Inadequate Alternatives mean that more states are policing schools with armed officers. Before the 1970’s police were almost absent from elementary and junior high schools.
Today, armed officers are dealing with an escalation of violence and criminal prosecutions for children as young as 6, 7 and 8. Prosecuting kids in place of using resources to help them adapt destroys the fabric of a child’s life and achieves the exact opposite of what children need and society expects from an elementary or junior high school experience.
There are a significant number of us who believe it more important to punish bad behavior in children than it is to help them develop the skills they need to live among us. When these folks hold sway in education, the institution suffers, the child suffers, and the community gains one more troubled adult a few years later. For too long, America has led the world in crime, incarceration, violence and troubled schools. While not the only reason, treating at risk children with behavioral problems as offenders instead of troubled youth has played a big role.
The articles below are obvious examples of policing and education gone wrong. No child should have to live with this kind of institutional abuse. ALL ADULTS ARE THE PROTECTORS OF ALL CHILDREN
When 14-year-old Ryan Turk cut ahead of the lunch line to grab a milk, he didn’t expect to get in trouble. He certainly didn’t plan to end up in handcuffs. But Turk, a black student at Graham Park Middle School, was arrested for disorderly conduct and petty larceny for procuring the 65-cent carton. The state of Virginia is actually prosecuting the case, which went to trial in November.
Changing the rules of the game requires federal, state, and local reforms. With little evidence that police in schools make students safer and plenty that they facilitate harm to students’ liberty and well-being, the Department of Justice should end the cops program’s SRO grants to districts. Taxpayers should not be on the hook for billions that promote unjust school conditions and put kids at greater risk of future involvement with the criminal justice system. And students should feel like they can talk to school officials when they have problems without forfeiting their constitutional rights and winding up in the back of police cars.Details
Nadine Burke Harris, Surgeon General of California has declared childhood trauma
a public health epidemic and public schools crisis.
Kids At Risk Action invites you to start the conversation in your community with our INVISIBLE CHILDREN Campus program (provided free to colleges & museums).Details
Former Minneapolis School Superintendent Peter Hutchinson’s classroom fix for remote learning COVID problems is a terrific and necessary solution that can be implemented economically and quickly. It’s a simple and will be popular in every community.
We should not wait – this is truly an expanding crisis for school children in many communities.
Here’s why; Pre-COVID, Minnesota schools have for years maintained an over the top student achievement gap with some of the lowest reading, math and history scores in the nation.Details
Across the board, America’s Southern States seem to maintain an anti tax mantra that devalues the well-being of other people’s children. This clear from the KIDS COUNT statistics over the years. This is their most recent data for 2020Details
California’s Surgeon General Nadine Burke Harris has declared Adverse Childhood Experiences a public health problem and public school crisis in her state.
Posts & Video From ACEs Connection (+trauma informed resources for Covid19 quarantine)Details
This important article from Safe Passage for Children of Minnesota addresses the issues and guidelines for keeping children and workers safe.
Covid19 risks, strategy and resources are now a daily concern for many of us.
Share it widely.Details
300 years ago, an Irish Minister wrote an explosive satire that was misinterpreted by many readers of his day (printed in its entirety below).
In a gruesome and widely read logical argument, Jonathan Swift clearly articulated a plan that would relieve the suffering of Irish families and their youngest children by selling babies to the English to be eaten (in a stew that he included the recipe for).
Back in the day, these writings were the modern equivalent of you tube or a precursor to Twitter and consumed voraciously by all who could read (or read them to others).
Public policy treated poor Irish more like animals than people and Irish children were doomed to lives of crime, prostitution, and abject poverty.
Was Swift’s underlying argument that death might be preferable to children doomed to disease, crime, prostitution, & the cruelties suffered by abandoned children of his time?Details
Let’s stamp out homelessness for 2 year old children. .
Let’s change the sad fact that children in many third world nations stand a better change of being vaccinated against preventable deadly diseases than U.S. kids…
Make a resolution to support reading programs and mental health programs that teach children how to cope with their surroundings and insure that they can read by the third grade. This will have a great and positive impact on graduation rates, crime rates, and the overall safety and happiness of our communities.
Le’t’s resolve to promote good public health programs and reduce the prevalence of sexually transmitted disease among our youth (we lead the world in this realm).
Overall, we need to recognize the value of children in our society. As Pliny said 2500 years ago, “What we do to our children, they will do to society”.
Read David Strands Early Childhood Education Manifesto below, it is a first rate strategy for saving the next generation in America;Details
4th Annual Law Enforcement and
Social Services Conference
October 17, 2019
Best Western Plus Kelly Inn 100 4th Avenue South St. Cloud MN, 56301
Sponsorships & Exhibitions • Panels & Discussion
Presentations & Workshops • Networking & Partnership Building
Greetings Law Enforcement, Social Services Professionals, and Honored Guests!Details
1/3 of foster children have mental health issues serious enough to be forced onto psychotropic medications.
Of the 2 million youth arrested in America every year, 70% or them have mental health issues – half of them have severe, chronic and often multiple diagnosis.
That’s what teachers and schools face every day with one school nurse if they are lucky enough to have one.Details
KARA needs children’s issue videos for our traveling INVISIBLE CHILDREN Campus Program
Do you know someone with a compelling video story about child abuse, foster care, child protection or other at risk children’s issues?
Forward this to them and help Kids At Risk Action as we build awareness and support for the people, policies and programs that improve the lives of abused and neglected children.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with video project in the subject lineDetails
Annual teacher turnover is highest in Arizona (24%) and New Mexico (23%) Minnesota is 14th highest in teacher turnover.
After my workshop in New York at the United Nations Annual Youth Assembly, a line of ex social workers formed to tell me their stories of why they quit. Annual social worker turnover has been 20 to 40% for many years with individual agency rates as high as 65%.
Police officer turnover rates fall in the middle of teacher/social turnover rates (about 14%) but their suicide, divorce & substance abuse rates are significantly higher.Details
If we knew the costs abused children carry with them through a lifetime and the cost of multiple generations of abused children there would be
They proved that by investing in early childhood programs children became much more likely to succeed in school and lead a productive life. This research was the most practical approach to the economics of childhood development this nation has ever seen.
KARA believes that this federal reserve study has not had the impact it should have had because;
We don’t respond to how much money is saved as powerfully as we do to how much things cost,
Almost no one knows the short or long term costs abused children carry with them through a lifetime or,
The cost of multiple generations of abused children
This KARA post from 2005 suggests a significant improvement in graduation rates in Minneapolis schools. No Child Left Behind really did leave behind a great many children.
From our 2005 piece;
Roosevelt High school graduated 28% of its students last year—Minneapolis and other big city schools averaged graduation rates between 50% and 60% nationwide. 25% of graduating U.S. high school seniors are functionally illiterate.
Teachers and school administrators are accused of bad stewardship. That is like blaming the police for who sits in the back seat of a squad car. It’s not their fault.We are all in this together, or as Pliny the elder said 2500 years ago, “what we do to our children, they will do to our society”Details
Our mean spirited and child unfriendly politics is driving teachers into public office. This is a sample and it the most positive movement towards better treatment of children than we have seen in a long time. Blaming teachers for trouble schools is so wrong.
Looking for better schools, higher graduation rates and safer communities? Support schools and the people on the front lines.
What we do to our children, they will do to society (Pliny the Elder 2000 years ago)Details
After all these years of Prozac and drugging of children with mental health issues and so little access to mental health services, it’s refreshing to see students and their petition for improving these services in the schools.
Thank you students at Mounds View and Hopkins high schools for speaking out and your effort to create a more compassionate and safe atmosphere for troubled youth.
When child suicides make the news (today’s Star Tribune article), there is a gaping hole where failed suicide attempts and other self harming behaviors of children should be accounted for and reckoned with.
State Ward children so often have dangerous lifestyles – self harming and even life threatening behaviors that we don’t speak of and no one knows but a few people involved in these tragedies.
When foster child Kendrea Johnson hung herself the County Corornor stated that six year old children just did not have the mental capacity to execute a suicide successfully (he called her death an accident – she left a note).
The Star Tribune’s chart showing 5-14 year old children as a tiny part of child suicides would be dwarfed by including their attempted suicides, cutting and other self harming behaviors.
All Adults Are The Protectors of All ChildrenDetails
37% of children overall and 57% of Black children are reported to child protection services in America by the time they turn 18.
(American Journal of Public Health 1.17)
12 million children a year are reported to child protection services each year and in many states, 1/3 of foster children are required to take psychotropic medicinesDetails