Quarterly Meeting Agenda
Friday, June 4, 2004
White House Conference Center, Truman Room
Please note: a picture I.D. is required for admittance.
Quarterly Meeting Summary
June 4, 2004
White House Conference Center
This Quarterly Meeting of the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention provided Council members and the public with information on mentoring programs. The Council heard presentations on mentoring programs managed by the Mid-Atlantic Network for Youth and Family Services, the Family and Youth Services Bureau (HHS), the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (Justice), and the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools (Education). Practitioner members of the Council offered feedback on the presentations about federal mentoring programs. The Council reviewed the status of action items from the March 19, 2004, Quarterly Meeting and discussed and adopted a recommendation to establish a Council Planning Team to help plan meetings, implement Council decisions, and coordinate Council activities. A new Council member, Victor Rodriquez, was sworn in.
U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)
White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP)
U.S. Department of Labor (DOL)
U.S. Department of Education (ED)
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Corporation for National and Community Service
Welcome and Introductions
Mr. Flores welcomed Council members and members of the public to the Quarterly Meeting of the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention and thanked them for attending. He also noted the presence of members of the media and acknowledged their important role in informing the public about issues and advances in juvenile justice.
The Council is a collaboration of a number of federal agencies, not just representatives from the U.S. Department of Justice. Therefore, the site for each meeting rotates among the member agencies. The June 2004 meeting was hosted by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and was held at the White House Conference Center in Washington, DC . Mr. Flores introduced Tad Davis with ONDCP.
Mr. Davis welcomed participants on behalf of ONDCP Director John Walters and extended greetings from Mr. Walters and Dr. Andrea Barthwell, who are visiting high schools in Chicago to observe firsthand local drug-testing programs and a media event related to this year's "School's Out" initiative, which is sponsored by ONDCP's National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign.
Mr. Davis described two developments at ONDCP. President George W. Bush has requested increased funding (from $2 to $25 million) for the student drug-testing program, which will allow more schools and children to participate. He also discussed the ongoing media campaign to reach youth, parents, and guardians with antidrug messages. Spanish-language versions of these advertisements will soon be available in the United States and Puerto Rico .
Introduction and Swearing in of New Member Appointed by President George W. Bush:
Mr. Flores introduced Victor Rodriquez as a new member of the Council.
Mr. Rodriquez stated that he has worked in criminal justice and law enforcement for more than 25 years, including 6 years directing a parole agency. He expressed hope that his experiences in South Texas, an area bordering Mexico with a large Hispanic population, will help him contribute to the work of the Council.
Mr. Flores noted the current emphasis in juvenile justice on prevention, not just punitive measures. Members of the Council such as prosecutors, judges, and law enforcement officers are keenly aware of the need for prevention efforts. Mr. Flores welcomed Mr. Rodriguez to the council.
Mr. Flores introduced Judge Adele Grubbs, who swore in Mr. Rodriquez.
Review of Status of Action Items From March 19, 2004, Quarterly Meeting of the Coordinating Council
Mr. Flores introduced Timothy Wight, who led a discussion reviewing the status of the action items from the March 19, 2004, Council meeting.
Mr. Flores asked for members' comments on the agenda items.
Discussion of Recommendation To Establish Council Planning Team
Mr. Flores posed a challenge to the Council: How can it be more effective between meetings? The establishment of a Council Planning Team to help plan meetings, implement Council decisions, and coordinate Council activities has been recommended. Attendance by senior-level members of agencies at Council meetings is critical, as is the followup work performed between meetings by designated staff. Meeting agendas must reflect the needs of all the member agencies.
Mr. Wight outlined the rationale and proposed activities of the Council Planning Team. An interagency planning team would ensure that representation from all Council agencies is included in all Council decisions. Each member of the team would brief their respective Council member regularly and prior to meetings on Council activities, represent the agency in planning the quarterly meetings, track Council decisions that affect each agency to report status at future Council meetings, and coordinate with other agencies on implementing council decisions. The Council Planning Team member would need regular and frequent access to the Council member, comprehensive knowledge of agency programs that relate to the statutory mandates of the Council, and the ability to attend Council Management Team planning meetings one to two times a month in person or by conference call.
Mr. Wight called for comments and questions from the members about the Council Planning Team recommendation.
Mr. Flores encouraged all members, including practitioner members, to let him know what issues they want on the agenda. He plans to meet individually with members to learn about the issues important to each one. He also assured members that Mr. Wight will share ideas and concerns with members through more formal communications, such as written correspondence, handouts, and electronic messaging. In addition, members should feel free to reach out to all agencies directly and to Mr. Flores and Mr. Wight.
Mr. Flores asked whether the group consented to adopt this recommendation. After no objections were raised, the recommendation to establish a Council Planning Team was adopted.
Introduction to Presentations on Coordinating Mentoring Programs
Mr. Flores opened the panel of presentations on the coordination of mentoring programs in federal agencies by stating that federal funding overall for building strong youth through mentoring has increased. DOJ has more than 200 successful mentoring programs across the nation through Juvenile Mentoring Program (JUMP) grants. In addition, the National Mentoring Center, Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS), and new faith-based mentoring programs are supported by OJJDP. (The faith-based initiative funds faith-based organizations to recruit their members to develop new programs and work with existing mentoring programs.) President Bush's budget for FY 2004 contains significant funding for mentoring programs in HHS and ED.
BBBS, which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year, has approximately 250,000 active mentors across the United States and has set a goal of 1 million mentors for the future. Large unmet needs still exist, and bringing ED and HHS to the table will help to meet these needs and expand the pool of adults who will work with youth.
OJJDP worked with ED and HHS to gather mentoring programs currently funded by the three agencies and has identified 350 mentoring programs. Mr. Flores directed attention to a wall map, which displayed the locations of these mentoring programs and illustrated the need for mentoring programs in rural areas. The potential exists, however, to reach into every community through schools, hospitals, and other local organizations. In addition, many agencies represented on the Council have facilities across the country, and the Council could help leverage support for initiating mentoring programs in those facilities.
Presentation: Empowering and Partnering With Youth
Mr. Flores introduced Megan Klein of the Mid-Atlantic Network for Youth and Family Services, an organization that works with other youth-service agencies.
Previously, Ms. Klein has worked for direct service providers for youth and has learned from those experiences that mentoring relationships and programs that promote positive youth development usually include two critical components: empowerment and partnership. Empowerment means providing opportunities for young people to improve their own lives and solve their own problems. Partnership means that mentoring is a two-way, give-and-take relationship in which each partner learns from the other.
Ms. Klein has observed that mentoring programs funded by the Family and Youth Services Bureau (HHS) involve young people in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of all their programs. In addition, AmeriCorps, which works with young people, includes mentoring in every program and places youth on its proposal review panels. These are only two examples of how federal and other agencies can empower and partner with youth to provide opportunities for youth to make a difference.
Presentation: Mentoring Programs of the Family and Youth Services Bureau, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Ms. Darensbourg informed the Council that the Family and Youth Services Bureau awarded 52 grants of $60,000–$525,000 to community- and faith-based organizations to serve children of incarcerated parents in federal or state facilities. This year, $40 million in new grants and $10 million in continuation grants were made available. The goal of this program is to place 100,000 children ages 4 to 15 in one-on-one mentoring relationships with caring adults in the community. Studies have shown that mentoring reduces substance abuse and increases academic performance.
Volunteer mentors are recruited through community- and faith-based organizations and community partnerships and then screened and trained. Grantees are required to obtain 1-year commitments from mentors to spend at least 1 hour per week with the children, use a "positive youth development" approach within the relationship (working with their strengths), and coordinate with partnering groups to develop a plan for the whole family regarding reentry reunification issues.
In this grant program, youth are represented on application review panels, and applicants are asked to include youth in the design and assessment of the program.
The Family and Youth Services Bureau held two grantee conferences for peer-to-peer learning and is beginning to provide training and technical assistance to grantees. The Bureau also sponsors a mentor exchange listserv, where mentoring organizations can share information, ideas, and resources. The contract to evaluate the national program was recently awarded to Abt Associates.
Ms. Darensbourg suggested two actions that the Council can take to coordinate mentoring programs among agencies: (1) provide a mechanism for training and technical assistance providers across agencies to share experiences, resources, and data and (2) connect grantees at the local level so they can share resources.
Presentation: Overview of Juvenile Mentoring Program (JUMP)
Mr. Stansbury noted that OJJDP has been at the vanguard of mentoring for a number of years and he is delighted that others are joining the effort. He explained that mentoring originally was considered an intervention program and is now considered to be preventive, bringing together law enforcement, social services, and other community resources.
Since 1994, OJJDP's Juvenile Mentoring Program (JUMP) has funded 299 sites in 48 states and territories to recruit, screen, and train volunteers; identify at-risk youth; and obtain a 1-hour-per-week commitment from mentors. JUMP is no longer funded.
The National Mentoring Center is funded by OJJDP to provide training and technical assistance to grantees, including new grantee training, cross-site training, and peer-to-peer training. Training and technical assistance are important to the success of JUMP because they provide opportunities for grantees to learn from one another and share their experiences. Mentoring programs have higher turnover rates than most types of prevention programs, making training a very important component and the Center an important resource.
The Center has developed a structured protocol on the case management approach; has developed and distributed more than 100,000 copies of printed materials on such topics as fundraising and sustainability, program evaluation, and special populations; and maintains a mentor exchange and a Web site that contains more than 10,000 technical assistance reports and 170 links.
Presentation: National Evaluation of JUMP
The Casey Foundation recently released data from the Kids Count program: 15 percent of the nation's children (3.8 million) say they are disconnected. This finding illustrates the need for and importance of mentoring. In 1996, Information Technology International was awarded a contract to conduct a process and outcome evaluation of JUMP.
The projects assessed as part of the JUMP evaluation represented a broad spectrum of mentoring models, target audiences, age ranges, and levels of risk, among other factors. Some grantees were large national organizations, such as Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, and some were local community-based organizations.
Challenges revealed by the study include recruiting adequate numbers of mentors (especially minority male mentors), maintaining mentoring matches beyond 6 to 9 months, and identifying same race/same gender matches.
The Problem Oriented Screening Instrument for Teenagers (POSIT), developed by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, was used to assess the degree to which JUMP youth demonstrated changes in risk levels. Significant reductions in risk were found in three domains: aggressive behavior/delinquency, mental health, and peer relationships. A meta-analysis examined pre-JUMP and post-JUMP levels of risk across projects to differences, if any, across project types: 77 percent of projects had positive effect sizes (indicating reduced risk) on aggressive behavior/delinquency, 82 percent on mental health, and 70 percent on peer relationships.
JUMP had a measurable, positive impact on at-risk children. When surveyed, many of the children responded that they were happy with their mentors, enjoyed the experience, and felt that the mentors had a positive impact on their lives.
Although some JUMP projects had few resources, including little existing infrastructure at startup, many projects have continued beyond the grant period. Some now receive funding through ED or HHS, which demonstrates that JUMP was able to help these communities develop the infrastructure they needed.
Presentation: Mentoring Programs of the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools
The U.S. Department of Education's first mentoring program was awarded in 2002, with additional funds added each year since then. In January 2004, President Bush announced a new 3-year mentoring program funded for $300 million that seeks to involve 1 million students. This program targets disadvantaged middle school youth (grades 4–8) through school-based programs. The funding for FY 2004 mentoring programs is approximately $50 million, including new awards, continuing awards, and training and technical assistance. Funding requested for FY 2005 is approximately $100 million. Programs must be school-based, and mentors must be volunteers.
ED's mentoring programs focus primarily on academic achievement, improving school attendance, reducing the dropout rate, and building and maintaining long-term interpersonal relationships. Goals for the program include providing general guidance; promoting personal and social responsibility; increasing participation in, and enhancing the ability to benefit from, elementary and secondary education; discouraging illegal use of drugs and alcohol, violence, use of dangerous weapons, promiscuous behavior, and other criminal, harmful, or potentially harmful activity; encouraging participation in community service and community activities; encouraging setting goals and planning for the future, including graduation from secondary school and planning for postsecondary education or training; and discouraging involvement in gangs.
The Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools is developing a training and technical assistance center to ensure that funded programs receive assistance, as appropriate, in the management and implementation of their projects and to ensure their capacity to sustain their efforts over time. Other methods of providing training and technical assistance include a new grantee orientation meeting at the beginning of the grant period, a national conference, technical assistance/monitoring visits, a mentor listserv, biannual conference calls, and annual performance reports.
Mentoring programs must have a strong evaluation plan that includes various measures of accountability. The evaluation plan will focus on three performance indicators: the length of the mentoring relationship, improved academic performance, and improved school attendance.
Note: The grant application for FY 2004 funding ($50 million) was posted in the Federal Register on Friday, May 28, 2004, for 40 days.
Feedback From Practitioner Members of the Council on Mentoring Presentations
Mr. Flores asked the practitioner members of the Council their thoughts on the mentoring programs presented by HHS, DOJ, and ED.
youth older than 15 do not bond as well with mentors; they prefer to work with peers and coaches.
In the U.S. Department of Education, the history of an ED (but not another agency) grantee is available by computer—each agency has its own computer system. Timeframes are tight, and 2,000 applications must be reviewed to award 200 grants; therefore, there is no time to coordinate with other federal agencies.
The group discussed adding a question to grant applications about the applicant's history of receiving other federal sources of funding. Because ED focuses on new grantees and encourages novices to apply, such a question could be a deterrent. The possibility of applicants submitting false information would require a time-consuming process to verify its accuracy. Although the question could be phrased carefully to overcome some of these problems, issues of fiscal ineptness and competency remain.
Mr. Flores asked that the group consider two suggestions: (1) Could a sample of applications be fully vetted by a contractor 6 months after an award is made, when the contract is signed? (2) Are there areas where we can help each other? Can we bring together staff who are working on mentoring programs and pool ideas for the next grant cycle (FY 2006)? Mr. Flores asked for ideas on how the Council and its staff can help streamline the process and find existing programs.
Mr. Flores stated that substantial positive action is occurring regarding the involvement of private support for mentoring across the country, even though it is hard to cull from the numbers anecdotally. Mentoring has a real impact on children. The No Child Left Behind program needs mentoring. We need to do better job of showing the impact of current programs. We know that the continuation of funding is important: President Bush, Attorney General Ashcroft, and Secretary Thompson (HHS) have talked about this. However, a lot of programs and resources exist that are not on the mentoring map, such as the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts and the U.S. Department of Agriculture nutrition programs.
Mr. Flores opened the floor to members of the public.
Mr. Flores thanked the Council members and participants for attending and adjourned the meeting.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
U.S. Department of Education (ED)
Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Administration for Children and Families
U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)
National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Office of Justice Programs (OJP)
Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP)
U.S. Department of Transportation
White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP)
Date Published: June 4, 2004