American Youth Policy Forum Dec. 14, 2009 Presentation
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American Youth Policy Forum Dec. 14, 2009 Presentation

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Leveraging Resources to Reengage Disconnected Youth

Leveraging Resources to Reengage Disconnected Youth

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  • < 30% teens working in June 2009 Lowest level in 61 years Half what it was in 1978 Consistent downward trend Even lower rates for young men of color 3 of 10 students do not graduate from high school; one million per year “ Coin toss:” 52% of youth graduate from high school in main school systems of 50 largest cities; stark urban-suburban differences. One third of high school graduates not college- or work-ready 40% completion rates in community colleges – within six years

American Youth Policy Forum Dec. 14, 2009 Presentation American Youth Policy Forum Dec. 14, 2009 Presentation Presentation Transcript

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  • Current environment
    • State and local fiscal crisis situation + local lag
    • Relatively minor federal investments, limited state/local match
    • Seeming affection for categorical programs
    • Devastatingly high unemployment => very limited labor market experience of young adults
    • Persistent achievement gaps, high dropout rates
    • Prevention & enforcement as articles of faith – what place for intervention?
    • Overall: lack of powerful driving policy concept(s)
    National League of Cities’ Institute for Youth, Education, and Families
  • To tackle dropout / DY issue fully, every city needs to put in place…
    • Understanding of issue as a community problem + room for all relevant leaders
    • Early warning systems
    • Integration of education & other data systems
    • Means to engage parents and stakeholders to set high common aspirations
    • Efforts to transform struggling high schools
    • Flexible portfolio of quality options offering rigor, relevance, relationships, and future focus
    National League of Cities’ Institute for Youth, Education, and Families
  • Promising local initiatives / policies
    • Leaders setting, following through on aspirational goals
    • Tangible cross-system collaboration efforts
      • Portals and cross-referrals
      • Transition-age youth task force & plan
      • Local projects seeded/supported via state policy
      • Supported by intermediary/lead agency + data sharing
    • Local assessment of need & expansion of pathways
    National League of Cities’ Institute for Youth, Education, and Families
  • Policy recommendations
    • Immediate:
    • Direct job creation funding to local gov’ts, e.g., modified CDBG formula, in partnership with WIBs
      • Fine tuning: “Fast track” authority; non-supplantation; focus on groups experiencing particularly high unemployment
    • Reauthorizations – priority considerations:
    • Sharpen policy regarding federal, state, local roles
    • Multiple pathways to HS and postsecondary graduation
    • Reciprocity: Jobs linked to staying in school; community service by , not simply services for
    • Comprehensive planning a la Youth Promise Act
    • Bridge programs for age of transition a la Chafee Act
    National League of Cities’ Institute for Youth, Education, and Families
  • Selected Current Resources
    • Local Programs & Initiatives
    • The State of City Leadership for Children and Families 2009
      • Identifies the nation's most cutting-edge city strategies to help children and families thrive
    • Preventing Gang Violence/Building Communities Toolkit
      • Essential elements of a local gang violence prevention: action plan, and blended prevention, intervention, and enforcement strategies.
    • Setting the Stage for New High Schools
      • Outlines seven key policy conditions that facilitate the expansion of alternatives and options for dropouts and other students who struggle in traditional high school settings
    • All available online at
    • www.nlc.org/iyef
    National League of Cities’ Institute for Youth, Education, and Families
  • Selected Current Resources
    • Analyses & Policy Recommendations
    • Consequences of Dropping Out of High School (national and local) and Left Behind in America
      • Available online at http://www.clms.neu.edu
    • Youth at High Risk of Disconnection: 2008 Data Update of Connected by 25
      • Available online http://tinyurl.com/y9f525t
    • NLC job creation letter to President Obama
      • Available online at www.nlc.org
    • Graduating America (Jobs for the Future & Everyone Graduates Center)
      • Available online at http://tinyurl.com/yfvp8tl
    National League of Cities’ Institute for Youth, Education, and Families