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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: February 24, 2017 02:20 PM
From: Representative Tarah Toohil
To: All House members
Subject: Introduction of legislation regarding a study on the quality of education in juvenile detention facilities
In the near future, I plan to re-introduce legislation containing the language in House Resolution 1026. The resolution will direct the Department of Education, the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, the Department of Human Services and the Department of Corrections to collaborate and conduct a study on the education being provided to children and youth, age six through twenty-one, in juvenile and adult correctional facilities throughout the commonwealth.

This population of young people is often overlooked by our society and the quality of education they receive in correctional facilities often does not meet state academic standards. Studies demonstrate that system-involved youth are chronically behind in school, and nationally as many as two-thirds of youth dropped out of school after release from the system. Additionally, U.S. Department of Education data shows that most youth in juvenile justice facilities made no meaningful progress in learning or academic achievement.

We have an opportunity with state implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) to address this issue. ESSA establishes broad goals related to delinquent youth, including:
1) improving education services to provide the opportunity to meet state academic standards;
2) improving youth transition from institutionalization to further schooling or employment; and
3) providing young people returning from correctional facilities or institutions with reentry support.

Please join me in cosponsoring this resolution to conduct a study.

Introduced as HR164