Improving Educational Outcomes
For their 2014-2015 project, Juveniles for Justice focused on the educational needs of youth in the juvenile justice system. Youth advocates identified problems that they experienced while in the system—from being forced into alternative schools to the low-quality education in juvenile facilities to difficulties returning to their neighborhood schools—and created a set of recommendations to address these barriers to educational success. Several of J4J's recommendations are reflected in changes made to Title I, Part D of the Every Student Succeeds Act, which passed Congress later in 2015.
On April 17, 2015, the youth traveled to Washington, DC, to share their experiences and recommendations with policymakers, including a packed room of staff from the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Justice. The youth advocates also presented their report to staff from the offices of U.S. Senators Cory Booker and Lamar Alexander and Congressman Bobby Scott.