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Juvenile Residential Facility Census, 2014: Selected Findings

 

In October 2014, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) administered the eighth Juvenile Residential Facility Census (JRFC). JRFC began in 2000 with data collections occurring every other year. JRFC routinely collects data on how facilities operate and the services they provide. It includes questions on facility ownership and operation, security, capacity and crowding, and injuries and deaths in custody. The census also collects supplementary information each year on specific services, such as mental and physical health, substance abuse, and education.

This bulletin presents selected findings from the 2014 survey.

Wednesday, November 02, 2016 at 11:05 AM

Juvenile Justice & Behavioral Health Learning Community Opportunity

 

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), in concert with the National Technical Assistance Network for Children's Behavioral Health, is pleased to announce a Learning Community meeting to take place on May 4, 2016 at 2:00PM EDT. The meeting will guide participants through identifying and addressing behavioral health needs in juvenile justice residential settings. Assessment tools, instruments, and screening processes will be discussed, as well as several strategic service delivery structures in those same settings.

For more information, download the event flyer or register now.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016 at 10:25 AM

New CNCS/SIF Juvenile Justice Grant Opportunities Available

 

The Social Innovation Fund (SIF), a program of the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), is currently accepting applications for its FY 2016 Social Innovation Fund Classic grant competition. SIF seeks to award up to $39 million to eligible grant-making institutions, especially those who emphasize healthy futures, youth development, and economic opportunities for low-income youth. Applications which focus on juvenile justice by using innovative, evidence-based solutions will be given top priority. The fact sheet and full announcement are available on CNCS’ website. Notice of intent is due Friday, April 15, 2016, and applications are due by 5 p.m. ET on Tuesday, May 10, 2016.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016 at 3:48 PM

NCCD Calls for Letters of Interest

 

The National Council on Crime and Delinquency is requesting letters of interest from social service agencies, school districts, local child protection agencies, and juvenile justice systems who wish to engage in collaborative data-sharing to gain a better understanding of youth involved with the justice system.

The project will identify at-risk youth and will enable the communities which serve them to appropriately and efficiently allocate specific resources, increasing the impact of social services on those youth who need them most (particularly young people of color).

Letters of interest are due March 25, 2016.

A full description of the project and eligibility requirements are available on NCCD's website..

Tuesday, March 15, 2016 at 11:02 AM

The Performance-based Standards Scholarship Fund

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce the launch of the PbS Scholarship Fund, created to inspire, encourage and provide financial support for youths and staff seeking to further their post-secondary education. This year’s scholarship fund has $6,000 available for youths and staff in PbS facilities. Applications will be accepted until May 1, 2016.

Read the overview.

View and print the application.

Tuesday, March 01, 2016 at 3:04 PM

Dwight Howard and D12 Foundation Visit Central Oklahoma Juvenile Center

 

How cool would it be to wake up one morning, go to work and get a phone call from a famous athlete who read about something wonderful you did and wants to come visit and meet you? And where you worked was a youth correctional facility?

It happened to Jerry Fry and his team at the Central Oklahoma Juvenile Center (COJC).

The call came “completely out of the blue,” Fry described, from NBA star Dwight Howard’s D12 Foundation to COJC Administrator of Programs Steve Moore. The foundation representative told Moore that Howard wanted to visit juvenile justice facilities but not just any facility; facilities that are known to treat kids with respect and offer progressive programming. COJC’s name showed up while the foundation was researching youth facilities as one of the 2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Award finalists. It was selected for changing COJC’s culture from the old correctional approach where staff focused on control and minimally engaging youths following a riot more than three years ago to now, a place where staff and youths work together to help the youths succeed and spend a lot of time together sharing experiences such as Howard’s visit. The PbS stats showing reduced violence and increased programming helped.

“We were absolutely thrilled that Dwight Howard wanted to speak to our kids,” Fry said. “All sports fans know who he is. Our kids, just like any other kids, love basketball so they were all familiar with him prior to us knowing he was coming for a visit.” Fry shared this description of the visit: “COJC is almost 100 years old. The largest space that we have for meeting is in our gym which is downstairs from our school. When Dwight got to the bottom of the stairs where the kids could see him the entire gym erupted in applause. That made Dwight flash a big smile which led to even more applause. The kids absolutely loved him!

“…Dwight was an outstanding speaker. He is charismatic, insightful, funny and genuine. He brought a very positive message and delivered it as well as he plays basketball. He first spoke to the large group, which consisted of all of our residents, many of our staff and their family members and two local high school basketball teams. It was standing room only. When it was over we broke the kids into small groups for more individualized attention. He met with the two basketball teams and all of our kids. He posed for pictures with our kids, the basketball teams and all of my staff. He signed autographs for each and everyone one of our kids and anyone else that wanted one. He stayed way past the time he was scheduled to leave. He was pleasant and engaging the entire time. He did not stop smiling. It was evident to me that he came to COJC because he wanted to. I believe that he genuinely wants to use his celebrity to help people, especially young people. We hope to have him back again.”

I have a hunch that’s a layup.

alt text Superintendent and PbS Facility Administrator Jerry Fry shaking hands with Dwight Howard

alt text Dwight Howard speaking to the group

alt text Dwight Howard meeting with youths

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Tuesday, March 01, 2016 at 2:30 PM

New Report by The National Crittenton Foundation: Gender Injustice: System-Level Juvenile Justice Reforms for Girls

 

The National Crittenton Foundation and the National Women’s Law Center have released a report on how trauma can affect girls’ behavior and explains the need for trauma-informed care within the juvenile justice system.

To facilitate developmental juvenile justice system reform for girls, this report will:

  1. Map girls’ current paths into and through the juvenile justice system;
  2. Describe the social contexts driving girls’ behavior and involvement in the juvenile justice system; and
  3. Detail recommendations for an alternative, developmental approach to redesign juvenile justice systems to address harmful social contexts and girls’ resulting behaviors, rather than penalize and punish girls for challenges beyond their control.

View the PDF Gender Injustice: System-Level Juvenile Justice Reforms for Girls.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015 at 11:33 AM

New Report from NCSL: Trends in Juvenile Justice State Legislation 2011-2015

 

The National Council of State Legislators (NCSL) has released a new report on state efforts to re-examine policies and rebalance approaches to juvenile justice.

The legislative trends across the country illustrate the new direction to broadly reform juvenile justice systems. Some of the specific trends include:

  • Restore jurisdiction to the juvenile court;
  • Divert youths from the system;
  • Reform detention;
  • Shift resources from incarceration to community-based alternatives;
  • Provide strong public defense for youths;
  • Address racial and ethnic disparities in justice systems;
  • Respond more effectively to the mental health needs of young offenders; and
  • Improve re-entry and aftercare programs for youths.

Download Trends in Juvenile Justice State Legislation 2011-2015.

Monday, October 26, 2015 at 10:34 AM

New Report from MacArthur Foundation: The Supreme Court and the Transformation of Juvenile Sentencing

 

The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation announced the release of Professor Elizabeth Scott’s report: The Supreme Court and the Transformation of Juvenile Sentencing. Over the last decade, the Supreme Court has transformed the constitutional landscape of juvenile crime regulation. This report addresses the key issues facing courts and legislatures under this new constitutional regime and provides guidance based on the Supreme Court’s Eighth Amendment analysis and on the principles the Court has articulated.

Three targeted issue briefs were developed to accompany the report:

To view the reports and accompanying issue briefs, visit: modelsforchange.net/transformation.

Monday, October 05, 2015 at 9:13 AM

PbS Facilities Offer Youths Unique Programs

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) participants offer unique programs for youths to foster positive development and teach skills they can use when they return to the community.

Circleville Juvenile Correctional Facility (CJCF) in Ohio now offers youths a unique program in aquaponics—the raising of fish and plants in one integrated system. Fish are kept in large tanks, while plants are grown in water. Youths ensure everything runs smoothly by feeding the fish, cleaning the tanks, maintaining water quality and making necessary repairs. A portion of the fish and plants will be used to instruct youths in cooking skills. Some of the plants such as lettuce, green beans, zucchini, squash and strawberries will be donated to a food bank.

The Donald E. Long School in Multnomah County, Oregon recently began a new gardening project. The Health and Vocational teacher shares a lesson in the classroom, then the youths move to the garden for hands-on experience growing fruits and vegetables. There are currently 24 youths in the program, with potential to expand to over 70. So far, the feedback from youths has been positive!

Thank you to the PbS facilities who shared their unique programs for positive youth development!

This article was originally posted on the CJCA blog.

Thursday, October 01, 2015 at 11:12 AM

JJGPS StateScan: Racial and Ethnic Fairness in Juvenile Justice: Availability of State Data

 

The Juvenile Justice Geography, Policy, Practice & Statistics (JJGPS) has released a publication in its StateScan series on the Racial and Ethnic Fairness in Juvenile Justice: Availability of State Data. This recent publication reviews the available racial and ethnic fairness data and discusses its public significance and obstacles.

StateScan is a series of publications providing a closer look at juvenile justice laws and practices within each state.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015 at 10:44 AM

JJGPS StateScan: U.S. Age Boundaries of Delinquency

 

The Juvenile Justice Geography, Policy, Practice & Statistics (JJGPS) has released a publication in its StateScan series on the U.S. Age Boundaries of Delinquency. The August 2015 installment details the history, purpose and current status of age boundaries in the United States and its territories based on an analysis of the 2014 juvenile and penal codes.

StateScan is a series of publications providing a closer look at juvenile justice laws and practices within each state.

Thursday, September 17, 2015 at 11:24 AM

Great Summer Activities from Central Utah Youth Center

 

This summer, the Central Utah Youth Center (CUYC) has been alive with the sound of whirring machines, bouncing balls, cheers, laughter and more.

Both youths and staff have been thrilled with the implementation of the SPARKS Physical Education Program. CUYC now has an exercise room complete with treadmills, rowers, elliptical machines and weights. They also received the various equipment and lesson planning tools necessary to implement a fun, interactive program to encourage youths to be fit and active.

So far, staff and youths have played exciting team games such as Ultimate Flying Disc, which allowed everyone to be out in the yard enjoying the mild summer in Utah. CUYC also held a fun Hula Hoop contest with competitions for who could keep his or her hoop up the longest and who was able to get the highest number of hoops rotating around their waist at the same time. CUYC even had soothing, though not extremely graceful, yoga workouts on their new yoga mats.

Youths were also able to get out and bask in the beautiful weather this summer by helping plant, maintain and harvest a wonderful garden, on the CUYC property. The kitchen staff planned recipes to include the harvested vegetables, so the youths could enjoy the "fruits" of their labor. Youths were also able to experience the rewarding feeling of giving when additional vegetables were donated to the local food bank.

Thank you to Kristine Black and the staff at CUYC for sharing their summer activities!

This article was published on the CJCA blog.

Thursday, September 10, 2015 at 10:56 AM

2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award Video Spotlight: South Hadley Girls Treatment Program

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) congratulates South Hadley Girls Treatment Program in South Hadley, MA, as the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen award winner in the community-based category. South Hadley Girls Treatment Program was selected as a winner of this award—given to the facility who best develops and implements a plan to improve outcomes—for transitioning from a point and level system to a behavioral support system based in positive youth development.

In celebration of the 20th anniversary of PbS, this year the winners received a video about their programs and improvements.

The beginning of the video shows the South Hadley facility as another house on the street, then gives an inside look to show the treatment-based, community environment it contains. The home-like atmosphere allows the girls to feel more like themselves as they prepare to transition back to their own homes. One of the residents, Naomy, said: “I’m not home right now. I don’t have my mom, I don’t have my family. And knowing that I have that little space in the program where I can feel like myself, I can be myself. This is home for now, and it’s gonna be okay.”

The staff at South Hadley build positive adult relationships with the youths while maintaining boundaries and teaching responsibility. Program Director and PbS Site Coordinator Melissa King said: “The staff are very dedicated to try to make sure that the young ladies feel that they’re connected to something.” South Hadley transitions most of the girls back to their own homes, and aims to teach them how to trust and build relationships. The positive reinforcement and relationships built at South Hadley have an effect on the girls, as shown by the amount who stay in contact after leaving the facility.

South Hadley used to have a points system, where points could be taken away at any time and not always with a clear reason. The transition to a tier system was a necessary change to reach the goal of positive youth development. Peter Forbes, Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Youth Services, said: “The key for me really has been to get staff out of the heavy accountability correctional mode and into more of a coaching mode.” The new system at South Hadley consists of “Think + Learn + Contribute” to focus on positive development as opposed to negative actions. It allows the staff to be able to give help and support instead of further punishment, and it translates better in the community.

Congratulations to South Hadley Girls Treatment Program and thank you for your continual commitment to positive development and treating all youths in custody as one of your own!

View the video here.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, September 09, 2015 at 11:35 AM

September PbS Person of the Month

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce that Melissa King, program director at South Hadley Girls Treatment Program, is the PbS Person of the Month recipient for September.

Melissa has been working at South Hadley Girls Treatment Program for the past 8 years. She has had a lifelong desire to work with children and make a difference in their lives. She became involved with juvenile justice when her husband was working with justice involved youths; when he made her aware of the opportunity to do the same, she “jumped at it!” With five sons of her own at home it’s no wonder she was eager to work with the girls. The girls in the program have affectionately nicknamed her MK.

Dave Crowley, PbS coach, had this to say about Melissa: “She runs a very comprehensive family oriented program. She is an outstanding leader!” Melissa states that working with PbS gives her the ability to compare data to see where improvements are needed as well as highlight where staff are doing well.

Melissa motivation comes from being a part of the girls’ lives (even if only for a short time) and watching the positive relationships that form between the clients and the staff. Her most challenging issue is discharging girls from the program to home lives that may not be conducive to continued treatment.

One of Melissa’s favorite work accomplishments was when she worked with a young mother in the program; together they met weekly for parenting classes. After the program the mother moved into a transitional living program and received her high school diploma. She continued her education and obtained her nursing assistant license. Recently, Melissa and other staff members attended her wedding! The former client continues to call and stop in to see them at South Hadley.

South Hadley was also a winner of the 2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Award! Thank you Melissa for your commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of your own and congratulations on being selected as the September 2015 PbS person on the month.

This article was published on the CJCA blog.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015 at 11:40 AM

Research Shows Positive Impact of Family Involvement

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is excited to share new research that shows how juvenile residential facilities can create and embed family-focused policies and practices to institutionalize the active and meaningful involvement of family members and result in positive outcomes for both youths and their families.

Analyzing PbS data collected in April 2015 from nearly 100 correction programs, Researcher Caitlin Cavanagh, MA, found:

  • More youths’ reading and math scores improved if their parents reported that they were kept up to date on their child’s education while he/she was at the facility; and
  • Parents feel most prepared for their child to come home when they have understood the treatment plan, helped develop it and feel they can comply with it. Parents are most likely to be involved in their child’s treatment plan when they can visit their child at the facility and they feel their opinions are valued by staff.

The findings are detailed the PbS Issue Brief entitled: The Impact of Family Involvement on Youths’ Success.

While the findings make sense and perhaps sound simple, the analysis includes several facility practices that offer the field some tangible ways to improve how facilities can engage and partner with families. For example, we know parents’ support is key to youths’ academic success whether the youth is living at school, at home or in a facility, but don’t know the most effective ways to keep parents involved when a youth is locked up. Interestingly, the research showed that instead of relying on visits and phone calls to stay up-to-date on their child’s education, parents were more likely to be kept up to date if they also reported knowing whom to contact within the facility about their child’s well-being, suggesting open channels of communications are the key.

The research was conducted as part of PbS’ work promoting the only national standards to challenge residential facilities to strengthen and support the connection between youths and their families and social supports. PbS established the national standards and outcome measures to assess implementation of policies and practices as part of its Family-Youth Initiative, a joint project with the Vera Institute of Justice, Family Justice Program started in 2011. Research completed by Vera additionally showed that youths with connections to family were less likely to act out while in custody and more likely to succeed when released.

We are seeing many changes in the deep-end of the juvenile justice system that recognize the significance of the parent-child relationship and the need to ensure it continues and is enhanced by a youth’s experience at a residential facility. We need to continue to capture those changes with research and data to sustain and integrate the policies and practices that work.

This article was published on the CJCA blog.

Friday, September 04, 2015 at 12:55 PM

2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award Video Spotlight: Muskegon River Youth Center

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) congratulates Muskegon River Youth Center in Ladoga, IN as the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen award winner in the detention category. Muskegon River Youth Center was selected as a winner of this award—given to the facility who best develops and implements a plan to improve outcomes—for decreasing the amount of time youths spent in isolation by 72% through incident reviews.

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of PbS, the winners also received a video to highlight their facility and improvements.

In this video, it is clear Muskegon River Youth Center has a more welcoming environment than expected from a detention facility. Muskegon River Youth Center recently opened its doors, and the main priority has been to maintain a safe and trustworthy environment to keep kids safe and happy. Volunteer Coordinator David Bower said: “From the moment the youth arrive at Muskegon River, we want them to know it’s safe. They don’t have to look over their shoulder.” The youths come from diverse backgrounds and experiences, and the staff are able to help the youths by showing they care and ensuring that everything they do is for the youths. Muskegon River Youth Center has various recreation and education programs to keep the youths purposefully engaged, motivated, and learning important life skills.

The video explains that the administrators saw their average duration of isolation was well above the PbS field average and decided they needed to make a change. To make a positive change in these conditions, Program Director and PbS Site Coordinator Leah Miels said: “The first thing we focused on was staff training and the detriment of isolation on, especially, a youth’s mental health.” She continued to say the success of their improvement plan was that every staff member was dedicated to meeting their goal.

Director and Facility Administrator Ashley Taflinger is as dedicated to ensuring positive outcomes for the youths in her care as she is to making positive changes at Muskegon River Youth Center. She said: “The most important part is reaching the kids, and showing them that light at the end of the tunnel… our goal from day one, is just have that kid leave with something more than what they came in with.”

Congratulations and thank you to Muskegon River Youth Center for your commitment to making positive changes and to treating all youths in custody as one of your own!

View the video here.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Thursday, September 03, 2015 at 12:56 PM

2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award Video Spotlight: Cuyahoga Hills Juvenile Correctional Facility

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) congratulates Cuyahoga Hills Juvenile Correctional Facility (CHJCF) in Highland Hills, OH as the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award Winner in the correction category. CHJCF was selected as a winner of this award—given to the facility who best develops and implements a plan to improve outcomes—for reducing the amount of time youths spent in isolation by implementing a strength-based behavior management system.

This year, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of PbS, the winners also received a video about their facility and improvements.

The video provides a close look at the innovative programs and committed staff at CHJCF and highlights the transition from a correctional environment to one focused on treatment, where they provide programming to keep youths busy all day.

Program Administrator II and PbS Site Coordinator Angie Wurgler said of the facility’s improvements: “We do so many things here now. The programming has just blossomed.” The video features various positive programs including yoga and relaxation classes, education and job programs, and the hands-on garden program. Additionally featured are the Baby Elmo program, for incarcerated fathers to visit and bond with their young children, and another called Freedom School, a unique and fun program to teach the youths how to read while promoting positive self-expression.

Superintendent and PbS Facility Administrator Chris Freeman said: “The secret is getting everybody involved. All in. That’s our motto.” This was evident at the awards ceremony, with a table full of additional staff and support from Ohio, who watched the video and acceptance speeches with pride and tears in their eyes.

This is the second Barbara Allen-Hagen award for Cuyahoga Hills Juvenile Correctional Facility, a PbS member since October 2006. In 2011, CHJCF was awarded for its facility improvement plan on reducing youth injuries, assaults and fights. Congratulations to Cuyahoga Hills Juvenile Correctional Facility for a job well done and your continual commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of your own.

View the video here.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015 at 2:58 PM

PbS State and Agency Coordinators Convened to Connect the Dots in Indianapolis!

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) held its second State/Agency Coordinator Training this year in Indianapolis, IN. The training was held in conjunction with PbS’ 20th Anniversary Celebration and Awards Gala at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

About 45 juvenile justice leaders from over 30 states focused on connecting the dots between research, reform and results and were engaged in PbS’ celebration of 20 years committed to treating all youths in custody as one of our own.

Executive Director Kim Godfrey kicked off the first day of training with an enthusiastic welcome and informative presentation about the history and future of PbS. Akin Fadeyi, PbS Implementation Director and Coach, then led an energizer activity and moderated a panel presentation and discussion that connected PbS to behavior management practices. Panel participants included:

  • Judy Davis, Superintendent at Illinois Youth Center-Warrenville,
  • Emil Fischer, Probation Officer at Riverside County Juvenile Detention Center,
  • Al Lick, PbS Coach; and
  • Russ Jennings, PbS Coach.

alt text Panelists from left to right: Russ Jennings, Judy Davis, Emil Fischer and Al Lick.

The panel discussed why behavior management systems are important in adhering to the developmental/research-driven approach to managing kids, the problems caused by punitive and harsh approaches and the positive, incentive-based approaches that benefit kids, staff and families.

Following the panel presentation, attendees watched a short clip of Simon Sinek’s The Golden Circle in which Simon talked about the importance of the why, how and what for the mission of any successful business or organization. The video led into the five workgroups that focused on ‘why, how and what’ for different areas of positive youth development:

  • Demonstrating genuine commitment to fairness, led by Penny Sampson, NH;
  • Ensuring sensitivity to disparate treatment, led by Ja’Net Smith, MA;
  • Engaging families and community, led by Shari Wolf, OH;
  • Planning for the future, led by Casey Traynor, ND; and
  • Creating positive, pro-social staff-youth relationships, led by Chris Blessinger, IN.

alt text The Engaing Familes and Community workgroup led by Shari Wolf, OH.

The first day of the training concluded with PbS coach Aaron McCorkle leading the group in a second energizer activity and South Dakota state coordinator Tonya Wright-Cook surprising Kim and all of PbS with an engraved plaque in honor of 20 years of treating all youths in custody as one of our own.

alt text Tonya Wright-Cook presents her plaque to Kim Godfrey.

Before sending everyone off to the PbS 20th Anniversary Celebration and Awards Gala, Kim made a heartfelt toast expressing her appreciation and sincere gratitude to everyone for making the last 20 years memorable and successful.

The final day of training featured the first ever Coaches Corner and the Coordinator’s Corner. The Coaches Corner included PbS coaches who each covered a general topic:

  • Aaron McCorkle gave his tips on undocumented room confinement and the importance of documentation and notification for line supervisors and facility management;
  • Al Lick talked about tracking data on a monthly basis so that each facility will have up-to-date records of their performance relative to critical outcome measures;
  • Barbara Chayt shared ideas on the organization change process and focused on the importance of the team and buy-in;
  • Janice Shallcross expressed how imperative it was for coaches to be change-adaptive. She explained that coaching required relationship-building and frequent communication to assess the need and to provide instruction, affirmation and encouragement;
  • Lois Jenkins talked about being transparent in an organization in regards to sharing results from each data collection across all disciplines in a facility; and
  • Russ Jennings explained the importance of project management and building PbS sustainability.

The Coordinator’s Corner consisted of six state coordinators who each shared specific topics that resonated with their work at their own facilities:

  • Chris Blessinger, IN, talked about how the role of the state coordinator relates to the role of a PbS coach and the importance of ensuring that information and agency changes are communicated between coaches and coordinators;
  • Heather Plager, NV, shared how picking her PbS team was crucial to implementing PbS in facilities;
  • Jessica Moncada, ID, explained the reorganization process at her facility that elevated the focus on PbS and other areas of particular interest at the state level;
  • Joe Marchetti, AK, put into perspective the geographical challenges that Alaska faces in regards to re-entry and family involvement at his facilities and how they overcome and adapt;
  • Marie Swope, MO, enthusiastically shared her top five reasons for why collaborative buy-in was necessary for successful facility improvement plans (FIPs); and
  • Shari Wolf, OH, informed the group about the steps and strategies she utilized to integrate monthly superintendent reports using PbS FIPs and review reporting.

The training concluded with presenting certificates to all of the attendees, who are looking forward to the training next August, which will be held in Boston, MA.

Thursday, August 27, 2015 at 12:19 PM

Congratulations to the 2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Award Winners

 

The Performance-based Standards Learning Institute (PbS) honored the winners of the 2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Award Friday night at the PbS 20th Anniversary Celebration and Awards Gala in Indianapolis. The winners were recognized for best exemplifying PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own. Three winners were selected, one from each of the different types of residential facilities participating in PbS: correction facilities, detention/assessment centers and community-based programs. More than 40 facilities from across the country competed for the awards.

The 2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Award winners are:

  • Correction: Cuyahoga Hills Juvenile Correctional Facility, Highland Hills, OH
  • Detention/Assessment: Muskegon River Youth Center, Ladoga, IN
  • Community-based: South Hadley Girls Treatment Program, South Hadley, MA

The winners were selected for changing facility cultures and practices that focused more on punishment into environments where staff and youths work together to help the youth learn and grow. Staff in the winning facilities treat youths as developing adolescents with limitless potential and focus on increasing their academic and vocational skills, connecting them to family and community resources so when they leave, the youths have been given the best possible chances to succeed.

“This year’s winners have embraced the science and research showing that when kids are treated like kids, given opportunities to do the right thing, supported in a safe and nurturing environment and engaged in meaningful strengths-based programming, everyone wins,” said PbS Executive Director Kim Godfrey. “The winners took the developmental approach and operationalized it in residential settings. They changed from using practices that don’t help youths, specifically isolation and punishment-driven behavior management approaches, to approaches that help youths understand choices and consequences in a way that builds caring, trusting staff-youth relationships. The 2015 winners and finalists are inspirations for all of us.”

PbS is a data-driven improvement model grounded in research that challenges youth correction, detention, assessment and community-based facilities and agencies to treat all youths in custody as one of our own. PbS was launched 20 years ago by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) to address the safety, health and quality of life issues reported in the 1994 Conditions of Confinement Study. Over time, PbS uniquely has established national standards to guide operations and uniform performance outcome measures to continuously, accurately and comprehensively monitor daily practices and cultures in youth facilities.

For more information please visit the PbS website: http://pbstandards.org/ or contact Executive Director Kim Godfrey at 781-843-2663.

This article was published on the CJCA blog.

Monday, August 17, 2015 at 10:12 AM

2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Awards Ceremony This Friday

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is excited for the 2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Awards Ceremony this Friday where the winners of the award will be announced and celebrated. The awards ceremony is taking place in conjunction with PbS’ 20th anniversary in Indianapolis.

All nine finalists addressed significant challenges facing facility leaders and staff to improve outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Correction Facility Category:

Detention and Assessment Centers Category:

Community-based Residential Programs Category:

Stay tuned to find out which of these amazing facilities and programs win the 2015 award on Friday night!

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015 at 11:02 AM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: Youth Opportunity Center

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce Youth Opportunity Center (YOC) in Muncie, IN as one of the finalists for the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award in the community category. The program was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan reducing youth and staff fear for safety.

The team at YOC recognized that staff and youth perceptions play a key role in how they interact and whether they are able to develop positive rapport with one another—a key aspect of effective programming. Therefore, they held a focus group to figure out why people did not feel safe. Based on the findings, the team updated the grievance process so youths would know their concerns were being addressed, implemented a council for youths so they would have an ongoing voice about safety concerns and improved staffing levels.

Paula Anderson, Director of Compliance, explains that buy-in from staff is key: “We feel that one of the keys to this success is that we have obtained buy-in from everyone in the organization. From our CEO and Board of Directors to our Direct Care Staff, everyone seems to understand that safety is a top priority. We did not need to “sell” this idea to anyone involved. As a result, we have received tremendous support in the development and implementation of our Facility Improvement Plan.”

The Barbara Allen-Hagen Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Her dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. The award is given to a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Winners of the award will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, August 05, 2015 at 9:10 AM

August PbS Person of the Month

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) honors Dan Weising, Juvenile Services Program Director in Pine Cottage at North Dakota Youth Correctional Center as our August 2015 Person of the Month!

Dan has been the Program Director in Pine Cottage for the past 8 years. He began his career with at-risk youth seventeen years ago while studying at University of Mary in Bismarck, ND. In his final year of college, he took a job working the overnight shift at a local residential treatment center. He had intended to pursue a career in teaching but enjoyed the work so much he stayed on to start a career in juvenile justice. Since working at the residential treatment center, Dan has also worked with the NDYCC as an Institutional Resident Counselor and as a Case Manager before taking on his current role of Program Director in Pine Cottage.

A true role model, Dan is also known to youths in the facility as “Coach” for his work as a high school football and track coach. He has always enjoyed teaching and coaching youths. He rises to the challenge of trying to help youths and finds it most rewarding to build positive relationships with the youths in his care. Dan says he is motivated by “innovation and the idea of evolving approaches to working with the youth in our care.” He uses PbS to model all of his unit improvement plans. He said they are currently focusing on reducing the use of restraints and room confinement.

Dan has been an instrumental part of transitioning the ideology and practices of the secure unit on campus, Pine Cottage, from an isolation-based to a more trauma-informed model. Dan and his team have changed the framework with their program to help youths on a more individualized basis, and Pine Cottage now manages all of the high security, high risk, and volatile mental health population in addition to the Assessment and Detention programs.

Rick Makelky, the Quality Assurance Manager with NDYCC, said “Dan’s calm and patient demeanor in working with the most difficult kids really sets the tone for all of those who observe him.” Dan was nominated for this honor on behalf of the facility, and “also on behalf of the many young men that have entered Pine Cottage scared, confused and angry and left feeling safe, respected and having hope.”

In 20 years, Dan sees himself living a similar life. When he retires, he intends to continue coaching and his favorite recreational activity of fishing.

Thank you Dan for your commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own and congratulations on being the PbS Person of the Month for August 2015!

This article was published on the CJCA blog.

Monday, August 03, 2015 at 9:20 AM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: Tillamook Youth Correctional Facility

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce Tillamook Youth Correctional Facility (TYCF) in Tillamook, OR as one of the finalists for the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award in the correction category. The program was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan connecting adult corrections and youth corrections for improved transitional services.

The team at TYCF wanted to work on improving reintegration, but youths were technically adult corrections in TYCF’s custody; therefore, TYCF did not provide aftercare services for them. Although this seemed like a larger problem than what a facility can overcome, the team worked hard and juvenile parole and probation officers work with all youths (whether they are on the juvenile or adult side) to advocate for them while they are in custody. This improvement plan has even assisted other facilities with similar issues.

According to Gary Westoby, PbS State Coordinator, “the key to TYCF’s success can be summed up in two words, networking and communication! OYA is a unique agency with “juveniles” from age 12 up to their 25th birthday. For those agencies with similar dynamics, we would recommend collaborating with your partner agencies and departments to serve the youth completely. This is critical in order for the model to be successful.”

The Barbara Allen-Hagen Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Her dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. The award is given to a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Winners of the award will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was originally posted on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015 at 11:28 AM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: Southwest Utah Youth Center

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce Southwest Utah Youth Center in Cedar City, UT as one of the finalists for the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award in the detention/assessment category. The program was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan on increasing the volunteer programming in the facility.

The team at Southwest Utah Youth Center determined the youths could benefit most from having more community volunteers who share their talents and insight to help the facility continue to instill skills that will guide the youths to be successful. To get more volunteers, the team reached out to a local comedy group and a women’s crisis shelter who agreed to volunteer and encouraged them to come in on Friday mornings when the facility had the most idle time. The facility also holds a Volunteer Appreciation Night, where the volunteers are given cards from the youths.

Beth Clark, Site Coordinator at Southwest Utah Youth Center, explains “the major key to our success was our staff’s devotion to the improvement plan.” She further adds “through our amazing staff and the use of organization we have been able to witness a change in our youth through their positive response to the volunteers who so generously shared their time with us.”

The Barbara Allen-Hagen Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Her dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. The award is given to a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Winners of the award will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015 at 9:43 AM

PbS Perspective July 2015 Highlights Facility Performance in Key Areas

 

Earlier this year, Performance-based Standards (PbS) released the first in a series of publications that offers a snapshot of the conditions of confinement and quality of life in secure facilities. The PbS Perspective January 2015 was well-received and we are pleased to announce the next in this series—the PbS Perspective July 2015!

When PbS reflected on what we have learned over the past 20 years, we realized that looking at data is the first, fundamental step to positive change. Our newest publication shares aggregate data from April 2015 that highlights facility performance in key areas proven to impact youths’ safety and healthy development. Although the publication only shares a few pieces of all the data we collect, the information paints a picture of facility life and gives you an idea about priorities and the current state of juvenile facilities.

Some highlights from the PbS Perspective July 2015:

  • Nearly three-quarters of youths reported that their facility has a good school program;
  • Many staff said they value family members as partners in their work with youths, but not as many said that they have better results when working with families;
  • Staff overwhelmingly agreed they received the training they need to do their job; and
  • About half of youths reported that someone from the facility explained what trauma is and why it matters.

These are only a few of the highlights from the PbS Perspective July 2015. To learn more about isolation, race and ethnicity, staff training and support, education, family, zero tolerance and trauma, read the PbS Perspective or our issue briefs, which delve deeper into specific topics.

This article was published on the CJCA blog.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015 at 8:18 AM

Congratulations to the Winner of the PbS Kids Got Talent Contest

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is proud to announce the winner of the 2015 PbS Kids Got Talent Contest: Tyrell J. from Coastal Evaluation Center in Ridgeville, SC. Tyrell was selected for performing his original song: “Perfect to Me.” He will perform his song live at the PbS 20th Anniversary Celebration and Awards Gala in Indianapolis on Aug. 14.

“All the performances submitted to the PbS Kids Got Talent Contest were kids with amazing, creative and moving gifts. Tyrell’s song showed his flair for songwriting, acoustic guitar skills and wonderful voice,” said PbS Executive Director Kim Godfrey. “I am really looking forward to hearing him perform live and appreciate all the efforts by the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice to make that happen.”

The PbS Kids Got Talent Contest invited all youths in assessment, correction and detention facilities and community-based programs participating in PbS to submit audio or video recordings of their talents. PbS received 54 inspiring entries that involved 77 youths performing individually or in groups, some original works, from 18 different facilities located in 11 states. The youths danced, sang solos, duets and musicals, performed sports and card tricks, played instrumental guitar pieces, recited poems and painted.

In May, 11 contest finalists were chosen and presented to the PbS Kids Got Talent Contest judges, a panel of esteemed juvenile justice and film production experts: Robert Listenbee, Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; Scott Budnick, President of the Anti-Recidivism Coalition; Marie Williams, Esq. Executive Director of the Coalition for Juvenile Justice; Patrick Griffin, Program Officer for Juvenile Justice in U.S. Programs for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation; Marc Schindler, Executive Director of the Justice Policy Institute and Karen Grau, President of Calamari Productions.

The judges described Tyrell as “very talented” and noted he is a “songwriter in the making”. The judges felt his song was “original and beautiful,” as well as “catchy and fun to listen to.”

“Our first PbS Kids Got Talent Contest exceeded all expectations,” Godfrey said. “We received submissions from facilities known in the past for taking a very correctional and punitive approach to juvenile justice. It shows how facility and agency leadership is embracing the research and science showing kids do better when they are treated like kids.” Watch Tyrell's amazing performance.

Monday, July 20, 2015 at 2:36 PM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: White’s Residential and Family Services

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce White’s Residential and Family Services in Wabash, IN as one of the finalists for the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award in the community category. The program was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan on decreasing injuries to youths as well as the number of youths and staff who fear for their safety.

The behavioral interventions, treatment modalities, and staffing patterns that had previously allowed White’s to succeed in safety were no longer working. The team chose to address injuries and fear for safety since treatment is hindered in an environment of fear, real or perceived. The team at White’s made changes to the orientation process and increased the staff-youth ratio. The big change, however, was the creation of Campus Life Specialists to work with youths in crisis since the program was seeing a rise in youths with mental health diagnoses. As a result, there have been no injuries to youths by other youths and reductions in youth and staff fearing for their safety!

When asked what the key to success was, Josh Bowyer, Campus Life Director, explained that meeting the needs of the population and quantifying data is essential. “The key to our success has been the addition of staff to meet the needs of our population…we continue to work with youth with more acute psychological needs and more criminogenic behaviors. Prior to [PbS] it was difficult to quantify the impact of difficult youth on our houseparent staff.”

The Barbara Allen-Hagen Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Her dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. The award is given to a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Winners of the award will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015 at 9:45 AM

Kid's Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Finalist Spotlight: Wasatch Youth Center

We are four weeks away from the Performance-based Standards (PbS) 20th Anniversay Celebration and Awards Gala in Indianapolis, IN! Participants are anxious to see the Kids Got Talent live performance.

PbS challenged facilities to step outside of the box and participate in the PbS Kids Got Talent contest. Youths in PbS facilities were invited to submit video or audio recordings of their talents. With over 50 very entertaining performances, eleven finalists were chosen after careful consideration.

We are excited to announce that Daniel C. from the Wasatch Youth Center in Salt Lake City, UT is one of the finalists! Daniel's performance was an amazing audio only original poem entitled “Two Faced”. It was both honest and captivating. Listen to Daniel's audio performance.

Thank you Daniel for sharing your talent and congratulations on becoming a finalist. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015 at 3:45 PM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: Cuyahoga Hills Juvenile Correctional Facility

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce Cuyahoga Hills Juvenile Correctional Facility (CHJCF) in Highland Hills, OH as one of the finalists for the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award in the correction category. The program was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan on decreasing the amount of time youths spent in isolation.

CHJCF saw a spike in isolation in 2008, the same year a lawsuit prohibited isolation as an immediate punishment. The team at CHJCF also wanted to improve the safety and security for both youths and staff and set out on a seven year endeavor to address isolation. The team made many changes including implementing a strength-based behavior management system and a Special Review Team—a meeting led by a clinician with youths, staff and family to discuss causes of behavior and recommended interventions. After seven years and many changes, CHJCF is now 10 hours less than the field average for duration of isolation!

Angie Wurgler, Site Coordinator at CHJCF, explains that improving communications is necessary for sustaining the improvements, but the key to make the changes is data. “Living our efforts everyday through our data, our trends, and how we react to our data is the key to our success.”

The Barbara Allen-Hagen Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Her dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. The award is given to a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Winners of the award will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015 at 9:44 AM

South Dakota Participants Celebrate National PbS Day!

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) participants have all done amazing work in their programs and National PbS Day was a time for everyone to celebrate! South Dakota had prepared many activities for each of their three facilities in addition to Governor Dennis Daugaard proclaiming June 5 as National PbS Day in the state!

East Campus kicked off the day with a 5K run followed by an awards ceremony and outdoor BBQ with youths and staff. Both Brady Academy and Youth Challenge Center teamed up and played a few games of softball, volleyball, rope course activities and zip lining. The programs also enjoyed a BBQ lunch.

Staff members were also celebrating with a bagel and beverage bar and a PbS table where staff could help themselves to items. Program managers each gave an elevator speech about a PbS topic, PbS Coach Al Lick presented certificates and Secretary of Corrections Denny Kaemingk and Director of Juvenile Corrections Doug Hermann concluded the recognition by reading the Governors Proclamation.

To end the day of celebration, motivational speaker Donna Hanks spoke to the youth and staff.

Thank you for sharing your stories and pictures with us and be on the lookout for more blogs about National PbS Day celebrations!

Monday, July 06, 2015 at 11:59 AM

Kid's Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Finalist Spotlight: Tillamook Youth Correctional Facility

The countdown has already begun for the Performance-based Standards (PbS) 20th Anniversary Gala in Indianapolis, IN and participants are excited to see the Kids Got Talent live performance!

The nation-wide talent contest invited all youths in PbS facilities to submit recordings of their talents. With over 50 submissions ranging from singing and dancing to card tricks and spoken word, eleven finalists were chosen after careful consideration.

We are happy to announce that Edward R. from the Tillamook Youth Correctional Facility in Oregon is one of the finalists! Edward was selected for his amazing acoustic guitar playing and rendition of R&B singer Ray J’s song ‘One Wish’. Watch Edward's performance.

Edward was also recognized in the Tillamook Headlight Herald for his incredible voice and guitar skills! Congratulations Edward and stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Monday, July 06, 2015 at 11:54 AM

California Participants Celebrate National PbS Day!

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) celebrated the first-ever National PbS Day on June 5. Participants from all over the country were sent celebration kits that included balloons and party favors to help kick-start program festivities! Two California facilities used these celebration kits to really show their PbS spirit.

NA Chaderjian Youth Correctional Facility hosted a Hawaiian Luau fully equipped with decorations and food! They printed PbS data on posters to easily share information and two of the Kids Got Talent participants shared the motivation behind their performances. After a poetry reading and dance routine by the youths, the day ended with cake and punch.

O.H. Close Youth Correctional Facility also shared their data on posters to applaud improvements made by staff. Youths assisted with creating and hanging decorations using PbS colors and preparing hors-doeuvres for all staff members and had a lot of fun! Youths were very engaged and interested in PbS and took full advantage to ask questions and learn more from staff.

Thank you for sharing your stories and pictures with us and be on the lookout for more blogs about National PbS Day celebrations!

Monday, July 06, 2015 at 11:51 AM

Kids Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Finalist Spotlight: NA Chaderjian Youth Correctional Facility

We are only six weeks away from the Performance-based Standards (PbS) 20th Anniversary Gala and participants are excited to see the live performance by the PbS Kids Got Talent winner!

The nation-wide talent contest invited all youths in PbS facilities to submit audio or video recordings of their talents. We received over 50 submissions ranging from poetry and airbrush art to basketball tricks and dancing. After careful consideration eleven finalists were chosen to move on to our esteemed panel of judges.

PbS is pleased to announce Jesus A. from NA Chaderjian Youth Correctional Facility in Stockton, CA as one of the eleven finalists. Jesus was selected as a finalist for his honest and endearing original poem entitled ‘Nobody’s Perfect’. Watch Jesus' performance.

Thank you Jesus for sharing your incredible poem and congratulations on becoming a finalist. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Monday, July 06, 2015 at 11:49 AM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: Muskegon River Youth Home

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce Muskegon River Youth Home in Ladoga, IN as one of the finalists for the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award in the detention/assessment category. The program was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan on decreasing the amount of time youths spent in isolation.

The team at Muskegon noticed a large difference between their amount of isolation and the amount the field was using. After reviewing their average daily population and number of staff, they realized they did not need to use isolation so often. The team reviewed all incidents and determined a number of areas for improvements including verbal interventions, offering locations for youths to retreat, staff training and reassessing youths every 15 minutes once they are in isolation. These changes resulted in a 72% decrease in the duration of isolation!

Leah Miels, Program Director at Muskegon, noted “the key to the facility’s success, by far, was creating staff buy-in.” She explains that providing staff with training and hard numbers and statistics had a huge impact on the staff’s desire to work even harder with troublesome youths.

The Barbara Allen-Hagen Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Her dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. The award is given to a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Winners of the award will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015 at 10:39 AM

July PbS Person of the Month

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce that Cecil K. Davis, Superintendent of Camp Summit Boot Camp in LaPorte, IN, is the PbS Person of the Month recipient for July.

As a youth Cecil was inspired by his favorite TV characters in the shows he watched: Wyatt Earp, The Rifleman and Gunsmoke. Eventually he fulfilled his childhood dream of emulating these TV characters by serving three years in the US Army and becoming a police officer. He has been working at Camp Summit for the past 6 years. Cecil holds a Bachelor’s degree in General Studies from Indiana University.

Chris Blessinger, Chief of Operations Director of the Indiana Department of Youth Services (IN-DYS), says “Camp Summit immediately embraced the PbS process and I have to credit that to Cecil. The culture in the facility has widely improved due to their continued efforts to strive to be the best.” Mike Dempsey, Executive Director of IN-DYS, adds “Their [Camp Summit’s] success is unquestionably the result of the dedication and the leadership of Cecil throughout this [PbS] process. Cecil has ensured that he is personally engaged and knowledgeable of the PbS process and he has ensured this same level of investment throughout the facility.”

Job satisfaction comes to Cecil by witnessing the difference he can make in the lives of the students that come through the facility. He finds the biggest challenge he faces at the facility to be family engagement. He emphasizes the importance of having parents and guardians work with the facility and reentry staff to continue to motivate and support their sons once they are released back to their communities. “The more involved the parents/guardians the better the chances for continued success.”

Cecil credits PbS with providing avenues to improve his professional skills and knowledge to implement and maintain the best possible programs to ensure the success of the youth. Camp Summit has maintained a PbS Level 4 for the past three years and was the 2012 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award winner for corrections.

When he isn’t working, Cecil tries to get in at least three rounds of golf per week. He also enjoys spending time jet skiing on beautiful Lake Michigan.

Thank you for your commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of your own Cecil and congratulations on being selected as the July 2015 PbS Person of the month.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015 at 9:14 AM

National PbS Day Was a Huge Success!

 

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing; it makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” -Voltaire

Let’s all agree: It is fun to celebrate! It feels good and Voltaire is right: we all benefit.

I wasn’t sure what would happen on June 5, the first-ever National PbS Day. We sent posters and a celebration kit with PbS balloons and party favors to all participating PbS facilities and asked them to join together for a national celebration of our 20th anniversary on that day. It turned out to be a party across the USA, stretching from our home state of Massachusetts to California, down to Delaware and South Carolina, across Pennsylvania to Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Oklahoma and South Dakota. Pictures show some of the creative fun PbSers had (you must log in for access). There were PbS banners and flags, field day competitions and performances, murals, posters, art work and cake, cake and more cake!

Probably the biggest and most unexpected celebration was the proclamation by the Gov. of South Dakota declaring June 5 National PbS Day!

Our hope was to create excitement and a national "buzz” to recognize all the work PbS participants do to meet our commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own. It’s hard work, often overlooked and frequently underappreciated. One of the things that drew me to this work more than 20 years ago was seeing staff working in the facilities here in Massachusetts creatively and consistently make the daily routine of facility life fun for the youths, which resulted in fun for themselves. I know from my own teenage children that a celebration can shift just about any bad mood. For me, even the littlest appreciation makes my day.

Neuroscientists say our brains are hardwired to think negatively the majority of the time. They have data showing we are more likely to see what’s wrong, not good enough or just wish things were different in some way. But I’ll posit that PbS has data on the opposite: what you look for, you find, and on June 5 we found a lot of appreciation, celebration and fun! Thank you all.

Stay tuned for more blogs sharing National PbS Day celebrations.

Monday, June 29, 2015 at 10:13 AM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: South Hadley Girls Treatment Program

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce South Hadley Girls Treatment Program in South Hadley, MA as one of the finalists for the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award in the community category. The program was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan on incorporating positive youth development into all aspects of their programming.

The team at South Hadley carefully researched behavioral support systems—attending webinars and conferences and visiting other programs who had successfully transitioned from a point and level system—to find a behavioral support system that matched their ongoing efforts to offer services that are gender-specific, trauma-informed and based in positive youth development. Once they decided on a system, South Hadley made numerous changes including monthly trainings related to positive youth development and trauma and more opportunities for youths to voice their opinions and concerns such as weekly community support meetings and student advisory sessions. The changes have resulted in more youths reporting that the rules are fair, they understand the program rules, they understand the behavioral support system and staff show respect!

Melissa King, Administrator at South Hadley, noted that support for staff is essential to success. “We moved slowly and gave staff tools as we proceeded with the transition. Staff's ability to access support from the Administrative team is the key to the success of the new behavioral support system.”

The Barbara Allen-Hagen Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Her dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. The award is given to a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Winners of the award will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was retrieved from the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015 at 9:34 AM

Kids Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Finalist Spotlight: Camp Tillamook

Performance-based Standards’ (PbS) nationwide Kids Got Talent contest invited all youths in PbS facilities to submit recordings of their talents.

With over 50 submissions ranging from singing and dancing to card tricks and spoken word, eleven finalists were chosen after careful consideration.

We are happy to announce that Josh C. from Camp Tillamook in Oregon is one of the finalists! Josh does a phenomenal job using an airbrush technique to create a portrait. Watch Josh's performance.

Thank you Josh for sharing your incredible art work and congratulations on becoming a finalist. The winner of the Kids Got Talent contest will perform as a special guest at the PbS 20th Anniversary Celebration and Awards Gala in Indianapolis, IN! Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015 at 3:47 PM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: Central Oklahoma Juvenile Center

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is pleased to announce Central Oklahoma Juvenile Center (COJC) in Tecumseh, OK as one of the finalists for the 2015 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award in the corrections category. The facility was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan on creating a safe environment conducive to helping youths acquire and use skills from their treatment program.

The team at COJC shared a common philosophy of a treatment-oriented approach rather than a correctional model. However, this shift required a complete change in culture, but the team at COJC wouldn’t let that stop them. An endless list of positive changes were implemented including offering college tours, developing an Honors Unit and replacing the black “storm trooper” uniforms with khakis and colored polos to present a non-threatening look to the youths. All of the changes resulted in a large decrease in injuries to staff and youths!

Carol Miller, Deputy Division Director, explains “COJC Administration feel they still have a long way to go but the change in COJC is both sustained and evidence based. They know they are making a positive difference in the adjudicated youth in Oklahoma and are steering a solid path with navigation assistance from PbS.”

The Barbara Allen-Hagen Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Her dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. The award is given to a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

Winners of the award in the corrections, detention/assessment and community categories will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was retrieved from the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015 at 10:38 AM

Kids Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Finalist Spotlight: Logansport Juvenile Correctional Facility

With just eight more weeks before the 20th Anniversary Gala, Performance-based Standards (PbS) is gearing up for our Kids Got Talent live performance!

The nation-wide talent contest invited all youths in PbS facilities to submit recordings of their talents. With over 50 submissions ranging from singing and dancing to card tricks and spoken word, eleven finalists were chosen after careful consideration.

We are happy to announce that Elijuwon R. from the Logansport Juvenile Correctional Facility in Logansport, IN has made the list of finalists! Elijuwon captivates the audience with his high energy and awesome dance moves. Take a look at his performance!

Thank you Elijuwon for sharing your incredible dance moves and congratulations on becoming a finalist. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 at 12:39 PM

Kids Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Finalist Spotlight: Illinois Youth Center – Warrenville

In celebration of Performance-based Standards’ (PbS) 20th Anniversary, PbS challenged facilities to step outside of the box and participate in the PbS Kids Got Talent contest.

Youths in PbS facilities were invited to submit video or audio recordings of their talents. We were stunned by the 50 + submissions with over 70 performers. Performances ranged from singing and dancing to video art and sports tricks. Each and every performance was unique and entertaining. After viewing all the entries, the field was narrowed down to eleven top finalists. Next, the 11 finalists’ videos will be reviewed by a panel of six judges, who are professional film makers and national youth justice leaders. The winner they select will be notified at the beginning of June and be invited to perform live at PbS’ 20th Anniversary and Awards Gala Aug. 14 in Indianapolis!

We are happy to announce The Fabulous Females from the Illinois Youth Center - Warrenville in Warrenville, IL have made the finalist list! Under the direction the Storycatchers Theatre, The Fabulous Females do an amazing musical performance entitled “Someone You Can Trust”. It was inspirational and heartwarming. Take a look at the performance.

Thank you all for sharing you incredible voices. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Thursday, June 11, 2015 at 11:48 AM

2015 Finalist Spotlight: Greene County Juvenile Detention Center

 

Every year, facilities and programs across the country submit applications for the Barbara Allen-Hagen (BAH) Award, which honors a correction, detention/assessment and community program who best exemplify Performance-based Standards’ (PbS) commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own. These facilities and programs show their commitment by developing and implementing strategic plans to change practices and services using PbS’ data-driven improvement model that results in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families.

PbS is pleased to announce Greene County Juvenile Detention Center in Springfield, MO as one of the finalists in this year’s detention/assessment category. The facility was selected as a finalist for their improvement plan on reducing the use of isolation and room confinement.

Through their own experience of providing care to youths in confinement as well as research, the team at Greene County Juvenile Detention Center recognized the detrimental effects confinement can have on youths such as increased levels of fear and an increase in suicidal thoughts. Therefore, the team carefully analyzed their data to ascertain the reasons why room confinement was being used and found some creative solutions! For example, some youths ended up in room confinement for not showering. Not only did the nurse conduct hygiene classes, but the facility purchased a gentler soap since youths complained of dry skin.

When asked what they would recommend for replications at other facilities, Superintendent Marie Swope noted that facilities should not only allow for questions, but “troll for solutions knowing that the suggestions offered are authentic reflections of what is really happening and consequently what can really work.”

The BAH Award was established in 2007 to honor Barbara-Allen Hagen and her retirement from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Barbara’s dedication to improving the quality of life in facilities for young offenders has helped drive PbS to its current success. Winners of the award in the corrections, detention/assessment and community categories will be announced the night of the ceremony on Aug. 14, 2015. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

This article was retrieved from the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015 at 11:06 AM

Kids Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Finalist Spotlight: Ventura Youth Correctional Facility

In celebration of Performance-based Standards’ (PbS) 20th Anniversary, PbS challenged facilities to step outside of the box and participate in the PbS Kids Got Talent contest.

Youths in PbS facilities were invited to submit video or audio recordings of their talents. We were stunned by the 50 + submissions with over 70 performers. Performances ranged from singing and dancing to video art and sports tricks. Each and every performance was unique and entertaining. After viewing all the entries, the field was narrowed down to eleven top finalists. Next, the 11 finalists’ videos will be reviewed by a panel of six judges, who are professional film makers and national youth justice leaders. The winner they select will be notified at the beginning of June and be invited to perform live at PbS’ 20th Anniversary and Awards Gala Aug. 14 in Indianapolis!

PbS proudly announces Ryan D. from the Ventura Youth Correctional Facility in Camarillo, CA as a finalist! Ryan does an amazing rendition of R&B artist Babyface’s song ‘When Can I See You Again’. In the performance, he shares not only his amazing voice but his impressive skills on the acoustic guitar. Take a look at Ryan performing “When Can I See You Again”.

Thank you Ryan for sharing your awesome talents and congratulations on becoming a finalist. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015 at 3:09 PM

June PbS Person of the Month

 

It is with great pleasure that Performance-based Standards (PbS) announces Jovan Haynes, Captain of Security at the South Carolina Juvenile Detention Center (SCJDC) in Columbia, SC, as our June PbS Person of the Month.

Jovan has been working at SCJDC for the past 13 years. Previous to SCJDC, Jovan worked as a contract mental health specialist and at the Justice Resource Institute (South Bridge Center).

Growing up, Jovan saw himself as a professional football player with a degree in business management. When he completed college and needed a job, a family contact found him a position as a mental health specialist. Through this experience he realized that he liked working with the youths. Jovan states “They looked up to me as a young man just a little older than them, and who was also doing well and staying out of trouble. It made me feel great when one of the youth told me he was going to change his life around and do well like me.”

Change is one of the more challenging issues that Jovan faces at work. Participating in PbS has allowed Jovan to see the “big picture.” He is most satisfied that he has been able to effectively lead staff in the right direction. Staff are now resolving conflict through talking, listening and the use of therapeutic approaches, which has made the use of force and confinement subsided tremendously. PbS has made him a better manager and his facility much safer. For all that Jovan has done, PbS Coach Dave Crowley declares him as “one of the best leaders in making positive change!”

Jovan shared this great story from his facility with us:

Due to a rare snowstorm in South Carolina, many teachers were not able to come to work, leaving the youths without classroom time during the day. The solution to this down time was to do split recreation with the youths. This causes them to be confined while one half of their unit gets recreation then switch them out. I did not want them to be confined and neither did they, but the officers did not feel comfortable with them all out together as this situation normally ended up in a fight. I spoke with the youths and explained the plan for the day, which was watching a movie off the unit. As we walked around the building other youths wanted to be a part of the group, and asked to come. It was explained to all the youths that everyone here wanted to participate and agreed to behave. I put the movie on for them and they enjoyed it. After that movie they wanted another movie. (Really it was anything to keep from going back to the unit). I did play another movie and eventually I ended up letting them play video games. Normally, the youths would never receive this privilege unless they earned level. These particular youths had never earned level or even came close. They now saw what they had been missing, I had three of these youths make level the next month! It was great to hear them in the hall ways telling me that they would be on level on this day, and they were ready to go to the game room. I had a great time with those kids that day because I saw them work together to stay out of trouble. One of our most problematic youths even told another resident that if he behaved he would help him with his reading later. That was priceless!

We find people like you priceless Jovan! Thank you for your commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of your own and congratulations on being selected as the June 2015 PbS person on the month.

This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Monday, June 01, 2015 at 10:50 AM

Kids Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Kid's Got Talent Finalist Spotlight: Camp Florence

In celebration of Performance-based Standards’ (PbS) 20th Anniversary, PbS challenged facilities to step outside of the box and participate in the PbS Kids Got Talent contest.

Youths in PbS facilities were invited to submit video or audio recordings of their talents. We were stunned by the 50 + submissions with over 70 performers. Performances ranged from singing and dancing to video art and sports tricks. Each and every performance was unique and entertaining. After viewing all the entries, the field was narrowed down to eleven top finalists. Next, the 11 finalists’ videos will be reviewed by a panel of six judges, who are professional film makers and national youth justice leaders. The winner they select will be notified at the beginning of June and be invited to perform live at PbS’ 20th Anniversary and Awards Gala Aug. 14 in Indianapolis!

PbS proudly announces Noah S. from Camp Florence in Florence, OR as a finalist! Noah does a phenomenal job reciting his poem entitled ‘Spring to Life’. It was insightful and creative. Take a look at his amazing performance.

Thank you Noah for sharing your incredible poem. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Friday, May 29, 2015 at 12:45 PM

Congratulations to the PbS 2015 Kids Got Talent Finalists

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is proud to announce the finalists for the 2015 PbS Kids Got Talent Contest. The contest invited all PbS participating facilities and programs to submit audio and video submissions of youths presenting their talents. The finalists were selected from over 50 submissions of various talents ranging from singing and dancing to sports tricks and video art. The 11 finalists chosen demonstrated exceptional talent, creativity and enthusiasm.

The 2015 PbS Kids Got Talent Contest finalists are:

  • Nicodemus G.—Larned Juvenile Correctional Facility, Larned, KS
  • Bransen W., Brendon B., and Carson M.—Rogue Valley Youth Correctional Facility, Grants Pass, OR
  • Daniel C.—Wasatch Youth Center, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Tyrell J.—Coastal Evaluation Center, Ridgeville, SC
  • Jesus A.—NA Chaderjian Youth Correctional Facility, Stockton, CA
  • Noah S.—Camp Florence, Florence OR
  • The Fabulous Females—Illinois Youth Center – Warrenville, Warrenville, IL
  • Edward R.—Tillamook Youth Correctional Facility, Tillamook, OR
  • Elijuwon R.—Logansport Juvenile Correctional Facility, Logansport, IN
  • Josh C.—Camp Tillamook, Tillamook, OR
  • Ryan D.—Ventura Youth Correctional Facility, Camarillo, CA

The winner will be announced in June and will perform at the PbS 20th Anniversary Gala and Awards Ceremony on Aug. 14 in Indianapolis.

“I’m not sure what has me most speechless: the awe-inspiring, take-my-breath-away performances by incarcerated kids submitted for the PbS Kids Got Talent Contest or the fact that despite initial skepticism and grumblings about the difficulties filming youths in custody, more than 50 individual performances have been submitted,” said PbS Executive Director Kim Godfrey. “Both the quality and quantity of the talent submissions are awesome. They tell me that youth justice reforms are happening, cultures are changing and PbS’ commitment to treating all kids as one of our own is beginning to grow roots.”

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is a data-driven improvement model grounded in research that challenges youth correction, detention, assessment and community-based facilities and agencies to treat all youths in custody as one of our own. PbS sets national performance-based standards of excellence to guide facility operations, services and programs to best serve youths, staff and families. PbS provides tools, training, technical assistance and expert coaching to continuously monitor daily practices and facility culture with performance outcome measures. Over the past 20 years, PbS uniquely has established uniform data definitions and a quality assurance process that creates the most timely, comprehensive and accurate national database of its kind.

PbS was launched by the Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention specifically to address safety, health and quality of life issues in youth facilities identified as problematic in the 1994 Conditions of Confinement Study. PbS’ primary purpose is to provide facility leaders and staff with national standards to guide operations to best serve youths, staff and families and to continuously monitor daily practices and culture within facilities with performance outcome measures. Over time, PbS uniquely has established uniform data definitions, outcome measures and a quality assurance process that creates the most timely, comprehensive and accurate national database of its kind.

In 2004, PbS was a winner of the Innovations in American Government Award by the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at Harvard University for uniquely and effectively improving conditions of confinement and the quality of life in facilities for young offenders.

For more information, please visit the PbS website: http://pbstandards.org/ or contact Executive Director Kim Godfrey at 781-843-2663.

This announcement was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 12:31 PM

Gearing Up for National PbS Day!

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is gearing up for [National PbS Day on Friday June 5, 2015 in celebration of our 20th Anniversary! We’ve invited our nearly 200 participating facilities nationwide to celebrate along with us!

Tonya Wright-Cook, State Coordinator in South Dakota, has begun preparing for their PbS Day celebration. The girls at STAR East Campus have a 5K run planned for youth and staff. Brady Academy and the Youth Challenge Center have a morning schedule that includes a ropes/ challenge course for youths and staff to participate in. A BBQ lunch will held for all!

Governor Dennis Daugaard, has even issued a proclamation which recognizes June 5, 2015 as National PbS Day in South Dakota!

Thank you Tonya for all of your enthusiasm and hard work to make National PbS Day rock in South Dakota! We look forward to sharing more celebration stories from our participants.

Thursday, May 21, 2015 at 4:37 PM

Kids Got Talent Finalist Spotlight

 

Finalist Spotlight: Rogue Valley Youth Correctional Facility

In celebration of Performance-based Standards’ (PbS) 20th Anniversary, PbS challenged facilities to step outside of the box and participate in the PbS Kids Got Talent contest.

Youths in PbS facilities were invited to submit video or audio recordings of their talents. We were stunned by the 50 + submissions with over 70 performers. Performances ranged from singing and dancing to video art and sports tricks. Each and every performance was unique and entertaining. After viewing all the entries, the field was narrowed down to eleven top finalists. Next, the 11 finalists’ videos will be reviewed by a panel of six judges, who are professional film makers and national youth justice leaders. The winner they select will be notified at the beginning of June and be invited to perform live at PbS’ 20th Anniversary and Awards Gala Aug. 14 in Indianapolis!

PbS proudly announces Bransen W., Brendon B. and Carson M. from the Rogue Valley Youth Correctional Facility in Grants Pass, OR as one of the eleven finalists! The trio performed an original song entitled “Lullaby” which was written by Branson W. The group sang and played their own instruments and did an amazing job synchronizing each of their talents into a solid performance. Take a look at the amazing performance.

Thank you guys for sharing your incredible musical skills. Stay tuned for more blogs about the finalists.

Monday, May 18, 2015 at 11:55 AM

Congratulations to the 2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Award Finalists

 

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is proud to announce the finalists for the 2015 PbS Barbara Allen Hagen Award recognizing facilities for young offenders that best exemplify PbS’ commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own. The finalists were selected from about 40 high-quality applications from across the country that developed and implemented strategic plans to change practices and services using PbS’ data-driven improvement model that resulted in positive outcomes for youths, staff and families. In addition to demonstrating with data they improved the conditions of confinement and quality of life, the finalists were selected because they linked the improvement strategies to research, developed thorough sustainability plans and connected daily operations with the ultimate goal of providing effective and developmentally-appropriate care for youths placed in residential facilities.

The nine finalists addressed significant challenges facing facility leaders and staff including reforming adult-oriented cultures to be youth-focused and less punitive, increasing volunteers and volunteer programming, improving reentry services, reducing and eliminating harmful practices such as isolation and restraints and creating developmentally-appropriate behavior management systems.

The 2015 PbS Barbara Allen-Hagen Award Finalists are:

Correction Facility Category:

  • Central Oklahoma Juvenile Center, Tecumseh, OK
  • Cuyahoga Hills Juvenile Correctional Facility, Highland Hills, OH
  • Tillamook Youth Correctional Facility, Tillamook, OR

Detention and Assessment Centers Category:

  • Greene County Juvenile Detention Center, Springfield, MO
  • Muskegon River Youth Center, Ladoga, IN
  • Southwest Utah Youth Center-Detention, Cedar City, UT

Community-based Residential Programs Category:

  • South Hadley Girls Treatment Program, South Hadley, MA
  • White’s Residential and Family Services, Wabash, IN
  • Youth Opportunity Center, Muncie, IN

One winner in each category will be selected and honored at the PbS 20th Anniversary Gala and Awards Ceremony Aug. 14 in Indianapolis.

“All the applications reflect what we have learned over the past 20 years about how to treat adolescents placed in youth justice facilities as kids and how to help them mature to be healthy productive adults – it’s awesome to see such demonstrated and documented commitment to treating all youths in custody as one of our own,” said PbS Executive Director Kim Godfrey. “Despite the changing laws and leaders, politics and funding, there is tremendous good work being done on behalf of youths entering the justice system. It’s not easy and it’s not done, but it is imperative we recognize what works.”

Performance-based Standards (PbS) is a data-driven improvement model grounded in research that challenges youth correction, detention, assessment and community-based facilities and agencies to treat all youths in custody as one of our own. PbS sets national performance-based standards of excellence to guide facility operations, services and programs to best serve youths, staff and families. PbS provides tools, training, technical assistance and expert coaching to continuously monitor daily practices and facility culture with performance outcome measures. Over the past 20 years, PbS uniquely has established uniform data definitions and a quality assurance process that creates the most timely, comprehensive and accurate national database of its kind.

PbS was launched by the Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention specifically to address safety, health and quality of life issues in youth facilities identified as problematic in the 1994 Conditions of Confinement Study. PbS’ primary purpose is to provide facility leaders and staff with national standards to guide operations to best serve youths, staff and families and to continuously monitor daily practices and culture within facilities with performance outcome measures. Over time, PbS uniquely has established uniform data definitions, outcome measures and a quality assurance process that creates the most timely, comprehensive and accurate national database of its kind.

In 2004, PbS was a winner of the Innovations in American Government Award by the Ash Institute for Democratic Governance and Innovation at Harvard University for uniquely and effectively improving conditions of confinement and the quality of life in facilities for young offenders.

For more information please visit the PbS website: http://pbstandards.org/ or contact Executive Director Kim Godfrey at 781-843-2663.

This announcement was originally published on the CJCA blog.

Monday, May 18, 2015 at 9:30 AM