NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED544343
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Sep
Pages: 33
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 10
Interim Report on the Truancy Court Diversion Program in the District of Columbia, 2011-12
Cahill, Meagan; Liberman, Akiva; Cramer, Lindsey
Urban Institute
The Truancy Court Diversion Program (TCDP) is a voluntary program for at risk students and their parents. It combines involvement of a Family Court judge in group and individual sessions with service provision. During the 2011-12 school year, a pilot TCDP was implemented at Kramer Middle School (M.S.) and at Johnson M.S. The program attempts to simultaneously address participants' motivations and attitudes, as well as barriers to attendance. Attitudes are addressed by the involvement of judges in the program, whose role includes meeting with individual families, and via the program's curriculum. The curriculum is intended to promote the personal responsibility of students and parents; increase parents' level of positive involvement with their children and the school; improve attitudes toward school achievement, graduation, and career aspirations; and improve parent-child communication. Barriers to attendance are addressed through family needs assessments, case management, and service referrals provided by a community collaborative and coordinated though a meeting with the judge and program team. The approach of the program is to address the "whole child." This interim report is focused on implementation. The report reviews the logic and design of the program, implementation successes and challenges, and makes recommendations to enhance the program and its implementation. A final report will also examine the services delivered through the program. Key findings from the pilot TCDP include implementation challenges as well as some encouraging findings. Implementation findings include: (1) Successful program implementation requires a strong partnership between the courts and schools; (2) The current pilot encountered challenges concerning recruitment and program participation; and (3) A limiting factor to integrated service provision in the current pilot was the lack of regular team meetings to assess family needs and services as well as academic progress, or a strong structure for regular information-sharing. Despite such implementation issues, the program seems to have improved attitudes and school aspirations of students, as well as parent-child communication, for those students and parents who participated regularly. The program also was successful in reaching needy families with services. (Contains 1 figure, 2 footnotes, and 1 table.) [This report was produced by the Urban Institute's District of Columbia Crime Policy Institute (DCPI). The project was supported by the Justice Grants Administration, Executive Office of the Mayor, District of Columbia. The funding provided for this grant was awarded to the Justice Grants Administration through the Byrne Justice Assistance Act Grant Program, through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, by the Bureau of Justice Assistance.]
Urban Institute. 2100 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20037. Tel: 202-261-5687; Fax: 202-467-5775; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Middle Schools; Junior High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Urban Institute
Identifiers - Location: District of Columbia