March 2011

Court Improvement Programs Impact Dependency Courts

This issue of The Judges’ Page endeavors to share with readers the purpose of the Court Improvement Program (CIP) and some successful projects this program has generated. ~ J. Dean Lewis, editor

Articles:

Editor's Message
J. Dean Lewis, Judge (retired)
Former Member, National CASA Association Board of Directors
Past President, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges

Summary: This issue of The Judges’ Page endeavors to share with readers the purpose of the Court Improvement Program (CIP) and some successful projects this program has generatedArticle.... 


Court Improvement in Child Abuse and Neglect Cases: A Historical Perspective        
Hon. Leonard Edwards (ret.), Judge-in-Residence, Center for Families, Children and the Courts, California Administrative Office of the Courts

Summary: Judge Edwards describes the origins and focus areas of the Court Improvement Program, along with the complementary efforts of national child welfare organizations. Article....


CIP Funds Instrumental in Building a Brighter Future for California’s Foster Children
Carlos R. Moreno, California Supreme Court Associate Justice 
Chair, California Blue Ribbon Commission on Children in Foster Care

Summary:  CIP funding helped support the work of California’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Children in Foster Care and our ongoing collaborative efforts to help abused and neglected children. Article...


Model Courts: The Next Generation
The New York Statewide Model Court
Hon. Sharon S. Townsend, Chair, Child Welfare Court Improvement Project of New York
Lead Judge, New York Statewide Model Court

Summary: The author describes changes in administrative structure and developments of partnerships that are allowing New York State’s Family Courts to make strides towards improving their capacity to ensure the safety, permanency and well-being of children in the child welfare system. Article....


Sustaining Energy for Permanency Planning for Children
Virginia’s Best Practice Courts
Lelia Baum Hopper, Director, Court Improvement Program, Office of the Executive Secretary, Supreme Court of Virginia

Summary: The author outlines best practice court activities and commitments and describes the extent of best practice court involvement. Article....


Court Improvement Project in Nebraska
Kelli Hauptman, Staff Attorney, Nebraska Court Improvement Project

Summary: The court processing improvements made as a result of the Through the Eyes of the Child Initiative have helped the Nebraska Court Improvement Project to systemically address problems in a consistent way and to ensure that the most vital needs of court stakeholders are being addressed. Article....


Developing Guidelines for Delivering Age-Appropriate Information to Children
Shary K. Mason, Model Court and Training Analyst, Oregon Juvenile Court Improvement Program

Summary: The author describes Oregon’s development of statewide recommendations for courts to meet federal guidelines requiring that children in permanency hearings are consulted with in an age-appropriate manner. Article....


CIP Funds Expand CASA Programs, Quality of Advocacy
Joe Gagen, JD, Chief Executive Officer, Texas CASA

Summary: The author outlines the ways that CIP support has helped Texas CASA programs strengthen local programs’ service to children and expand CASA programs into previously unserved areas. Article....


Benefits of CIP Funding to South Dakota CASA Programs
Amy J. Benda, Executive Director, Sioux Falls Area CASA Program

Summary: The author outlines the many ways that South Dakota CASA programs and volunteers have benefitted from CIP grants. Article....


West Virginia Court Improvement Program Grants Improve Service Delivery in West Virginia
Michele Bush, Executive Director, West Virginia CASA Association
Member, Oversight Board of the West Virginia Court Improvement Project

Summary: CASA staff and volunteers in West Virginia benefit greatly from the training and oversight provided by the Court Improvement Program. Article....


Nevada CASA Association’s Relationship with the Court Improvement Program in Nevada
Bill Fowler, Executive Director, Nevada CASA Association

Summary: Court Improvement Project funds have played a significant and critical role in the growth of the CASA mission in Nevada, providing a source of sustained funding in an area with limited resources. Article....


NCJFCJ Model Court Coordination with Court Improvement Programs
Elizabeth Whitney Barnes, J.D., Assistant Director, Permanency Planning for Children Department, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ)

Summary: The author provides an overview of collaboration between NCJFCJ’s and Court Improvement Programs designed to improve outcomes for children in foster care. Article....


Examples of Model Court-CIP Collaboration Systems Change Goal Alignment
Elizabeth Whitney Barnes, J.D., Assistant Director, Permanency Planning for Children Department, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ)

Summary: The author offers examples of collaborations between NCJFCJ and Court Improvement Programs. Article....


Web Resources: Court Improvement Programs Issues and Resources
Paula Campbell, Permanency Planning for Children Department, NCJFCJ

Summary: Collaborations between jurisdictions and state Court Improvement Programs can result in meaningful systems’ change in the handling of juvenile dependency cases. The following resources offer valuable information for courts and judicial stakeholders. Article....



 

 

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