Youth Law Center advocacy results in additional California funding to increase education access for juvenile justice involved youth
The Youth Law Center’s advocacy resulted in the new 2023-2024 California State budget requirement that all county probation departments offer in-person or online college courses in youth detention facilities. This expands upon a $15 million annual investment into community college programs for detained youth included in last year’s budget. Providing youth in the juvenile justice system with increased post-secondary education access should both shrink the population in detention (as more youth can use community colleges as the community institution and plan to secure release or diversion), provide an effective intervention that is truly rehabilitative and offers youth a pathway to economic freedom, and divert youth from entering the adult criminal justice system. In addition, the budget includes new mandates for academic assessments of young people entering and leaving detention facilities, education plans after a young person is released, and increased state oversight of juvenile court schools. Read more in this article in The Imprint.