Four Agencies Selected for Youth in Custody Practice Model

Posted by Edward Loughran
April 20, 2016

The Council of Juvenile Correctional Administrators (CJCA) in partnership with the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy (CJJR) announced today the selection of four youth correctional agencies for participation in the pilot phase of the Youth in Custody Practice Model (YICPM).

The Florida Department of Juvenile Justice, Massachusetts Department of Youth Services, Texas Juvenile Justice Department and StarrVista, a managed care agency that serves adjudicated youths from Wayne County, MI were selected to implement the YICPM, a comprehensive and effective service delivery approach for youth in residential care.

David Reilly, Director of the Texas JJD stated “I am very proud and excited that the Texas Juvenile Justice Department was selected to participate in the Youth in Custody Practice Model. This is a timely and tremendous opportunity for us to examine and refine every aspect of our service delivery and, with the help of nationally recognized  experts, integrate and implement  the next layer of best practices and reforms to improve the outcomes of the youth we serve.” 

"The Youth in Custody Practice Model provides Florida with an exciting opportunity to move forward in our reform work of establishing a system of excellence, which strives to provide a comprehensive juvenile justice system that best serves at-risk and delinquent children and their families,” said Florida DJJ Secretary Christina K. Daly. “With priorities placed on issues key to Florida’s juvenile justice system, such as utilizing a developmental approach and emphasizing youth permanency as part of case planning, the training and technical assistance of the YICPM is a perfect complement to the efforts already in place preparing Florida to be a national model for juvenile justice.”

Michelle Rowser, CEO of StarrVista commented "StarrVista is pleased and honored to be selected as a participant agency in the Youth In Custody Practice Model. For over 15 years StarrVista has worked tirelessly to provide services, interventions and placements that build upon youth and family strengths. We firmly believe that the implementation of the Youth in Custody Practice Model in Wayne County will strengthen not only StarrVista’s juvenile justice service delivery system, but the entire juvenile justice youth system in Wayne County when fully implemented throughout the County."

Utilizing the YICPM monograph as a roadmap, CJCA and CJJR and a team of experts will provide the four agencies with 18-months of Training and Technical Assistance (TTA) to align core, research-based principles with everyday practice to achieve more positive outcomes for youth, families and communities. The Youth in Custody Practice Model provides agencies with guidance on essential practices in four key areas:

  1. Case planning
  2. Facility-based services (e.g., education, behavioral health, behavior management, rehabilitative programming)
  3. Transition/reentry
  4. Community-based services

The delineated practices stem from the view that services and approaches for post-dispositional youth and their families should be, research-based; developmentally appropriate, family centered; individually focused and predicated on validated instruments, strength-based; trauma informed and outcome-driven; culturally responsive and coordinated.

Intensive training and technical assistance will be provided to support their efforts to implement the YICPM. Each site’s 18-months of training and technical assistance will be a customized package of services within the general framework of the overall initiative. The TTA will support sites in:

  • Assessing current practices compared to the comprehensive, research-based blueprint presented by the YICPM;
  • Developing a customized action to implement desired policy and practice improvements and achieve measureable objectives;
  • Training the staff on the research undergirding the YICPM and the strategies listed therein;
  • Building and broadening a coalition of support for the system improvements through an implementation team and a key stakeholders group’ 
  • Creating strategies designed to achieve long-term sustainability of the efforts, such as policy development, training, quality assurance and performance measurement; and
  • Measuring the effectiveness of the training and technical assistance in changing practices and achieving positive outcomes.

The training and technical assistance will be delivered by national experts with experience in the youth in custody arena. The experts providing training and technical assistance will include:

  • Ned Loughran (Council of Juvenile Correctional Administrators);
  • Shay Bilchik (Center for Juvenile Justice Reform);
  • Michael Umpierre (Center for Juvenile Justice Reform);
  • Kelly Dedel (One in 37 Research, Inc.); and
  • Michele Deitch (University of Texas)

Additionally, the consulting team will include a number of specialized subject matter experts available to assist sites in targeted areas requiring further attention, e.g., family engagement, trauma informed care and others.

The Youth in Custody Practice Models is designed to help systems achieve four primary goals:

  1. Promote safe, fair and healthy environments for youth, staff and families;
  2. Prepare, equip, empower and support staff to provide effective services;
  3. Increase positive youth and family experiences and outcomes; and
  4. Enhance community safety.

The training and technical assistance initiative includes a strong data collection component. Dr. Jennifer Woolard, Associate Professor of Psychology at Georgetown University and Co-Director of the University’s Graduate Program in Developmental Science and her staff will provide training and technical assistance to the sites to support data collection, analysis, and report writing related to the YICPM research methodology. This effort is designed to measure the impact the YICPM has on changing practices and achieving positive outcomes.

How to Apply

The application period for the YICPM is now closed. Please check back on our website in 2017 for more information about the next application period. For more information about the YICPM, please download the YICPM Abbreviated Guide.

Click here to view the YICPM Abbreviated Guide.