Category Archives: Special Education

Friday’s Children and the Law News Roundup

State Reforms Could Give Options to Wayward Teens, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Lawmakers in this traditionally tough-on-crime state approved a sweeping rewrite of Georgia’s rigid sentencing laws a year ago, allowing more nonviolent adult offenders to avoid costly prison stints. This session, the General Assembly . . . will consider changes to the state’s juvenile justice […]

Washington Judicial Colloquies Project – Using Language that Children Can Understand in Juvenile Court

Last year, I attended the National Juvenile Defender Summit in Seattle, Washington.  At the Summit, I attended TeamChild’s presentation about one of their current projects.  TeamChild was working on developing youth friendly colloquies for juvenile courts in two Washington Counties. The presentation inspired me. I had never before thought about the fact that though juvenile […]

Sunday’s Children and the Law News Roundup

Michigan appeals court rules that juveniles serving mandatory life for murder won’t be freed, Detroit Free Press, Michigan The Michigan appeals court has ruled a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision that ends mandatory life without parole sentences for juveniles convicted of murder will not apply retroactively to teens already found guilty who have exhausted their […]

Kid Courts Should Use Kid Friendly Language

Upon entering the courtroom with his defense attorney, the child starts waving at the judge.  When the defense attorney asks the child, “What are you doing?”  The child replied, “I’m waving my rights.”[1] Across our country, children are being funneled through the juvenile justice system.  The majority of these children have no real understanding of […]

Sunday’s Children & the Law News Roundup

In ‘Juvenile In Justice,’ Children Caught in America’s Prison System, The Daily Beast More than 70,000 children are held in U.S. juvenile jails. Despite some changes in harsh sentencing laws, photographer Richard Ross found despair among kids stuck in the prison system. Reconsidering Life Sentences for Juveniles Who Kill , The Huffington Post In the […]

Thursday’s Children and the Law News Roundup

UN Aims to End Child Marriage by 2030, Associated Press Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu said Thursday he is as committed to abolishing child marriage around the globe as he was to fighting apartheid in South Africa. The U.N. Population Fund says about 37,000 girls under age 18 are being married off daily, at a pace […]

Zealous Defense Attorneys: Not Just for Adults Anymore

On August 30, 2012, the Supreme Court of Illinois decided that due process and its Juvenile Court Act requires that a minor tried for a criminal offense in a delinquency proceeding should be represented by a defense counsel whose “singular loyalty is to the defense of the juvenile.” For an adult in a criminal proceeding, […]

GAO: Charter Schools Enroll Less Students with Special Needs

The Government Accountability Office released a new report, at the request of Congressman George Miller (D-CA), that found that charter schools around the country enroll less students with special needs than traditional public schools. GAO researchers focused on three questions: How do enrollment levels of students with disabilities in charter schools and traditional public schools […]

Microboards: How They Can Help Kids with Special Needs

The recent economic downturn has led to a drastic reduction in the funding available through states to children and families with disabilities. Less funding means children with special needs get fewer services. Accordingly, families may justifiably feel that they have lost control of the direction of their child’s development. They may feel that the high […]

Congress Should Pass the Keeping All Students Safe Act

Tens of thousands of students with special needs attend schools around the country every day. Laws like the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act aim to make these students’ public school experiences free and appropriate. However, students with intellectual and developmental disabilities often […]