With the beginning of the school year, our attention turns to attendance, academic achievement, and graduation. All three are inextricably linked, and all three are the focus of the University of Baltimore School of Law Center for Families, Children and the Courts (CFCC) Truancy Court Program (TCP). As we gear up for the sixth year of the TCP’s operation, we are collaborating once again with Baltimore City Public Schools, where we plan to establish the program in six schools and in two schools in Prince George’s County, Maryland.
In her recent “Audacious Thinking” blog, Tanya Williams, Coordinator of Baltimore City Public Schools’ Office of Attendance and Truancy, calls for community partnerships to encourage better attendance and for interventions that are comprehensive, student and family-based, and utilize community resources. We can think of no better example of these characteristics than the TCP. We at CFCC have collaborated with Ms. Williams for several years in order to implement the program in Baltimore City.
The 2011-2012 TCP is poised to tackle truancy on more fronts than ever before. We plan to continue to engage students emotionally, intellectually, and socially. We have an incredibly dedicated army of volunteers from the University of Baltimore community who are committed to see our children succeed and graduate from high school and college. We cannot, though, do this alone. We are honored to call many distinguished District and Circuit Court judges and masters, attorneys, policymakers, and administrators our partners. Most of all, the Baltimore City Public Schools are essential to this initiative – and, we believe, this initiative is essential to them.