(SEPTEMBER 12, 2023) – The Fifteenth Circuit’s Juvenile Division has been selected to participate in the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges’ (NCJFCJ) Implementation Sites Project. The NCJFCJ’s Implementation Sites Project, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, provides child abuse and neglect courts with training, technical assistance, and tailored support from a site manager to improve the handling of dependency cases and improve the lives of families and children.
The project, which spans over a two-year period, will begin on September 15. Each site selected will use a judicially led collaborative stakeholder team to assess current practices, identify goals, and implement change to improve their court practices and the delivery of services to families and children.
As a selected site, the Fifteenth Circuit is tasked with prioritizing the NCJFCJ’s Key Principles of Permanency Planning, some of which include ensuring access to justice, cultivating cultural responsiveness, providing judicial oversight and keeping families together.
Here in the Fifteenth Circuit, Judge Kathleen Kroll, Administrative Judge in Juvenile, will be the judicial lead and the collaborative team will focus on improving court hearings, procedures, and services for the youth who are aging out of foster care. Judge Kroll stated she was “impressed with the enthusiasm the juvenile division court partners have shown for this project and the desire of everyone to improve the lives of our youth who either enter independent living situations or extended foster care. The goal is to institutionalize best practices in this area and identify any service gaps.”