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The Promise of Adolescence: Realizing Opportunity in the Child Welfare System
Our understanding of adolescence has fundamentally changed over the past several decades. New insights from research reveal how changes in brain structure and function (such as the strengthening of connections within and between brain regions and the pruning away of unused connections) that occur during adolescence afford young people a remarkable capacity to learn, adapt to changes, and explore their own creativity.

But this understanding is not reflected in the current structure of the child welfare system, which was designed based on the needs of younger children. Adolescents’ more advanced developmental needs and abilities are not fully incorporated in the system’s aims and methods. Moreover, there are disparities within the child welfare system, with poor children and children of color being disproportionally referred to the child welfare system.

In this webinar, two members of the expert committee that authored The Promise of Adolescence: Realizing Opportunity for all Youth, Leslie Leve (University of Oregon) and Susan Mangold (Juvenile Law Center) will explore adolescent development science and opportunities for continued reform in the child welfare system. Practitioners, advocates, researchers, parents, and adolescents are encouraged to register. To learn more about the webinar series visit the project webpage (https://sites.nationalacademies.org/DBASSE/BCYF/Adolescent-Development/index.htm).

Feb 26, 2020 01:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Leslie Leve
University of Oregon @UOPrevScience
LESLIE LEVE is associate director of the Prevention Science Institute, associate director of the Prevention Science graduate programs, and associate vice president for research in the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation at the University of Oregon. Her research and teaching interests are focused on child and adolescent development and preventive interventions. She holds a Ph.D. in developmental psychology from the University of Oregon.
Susan Mangold
Juvenile Law Center @SusanVMangold
SUSAN VIVIAN MANGOLD is chief executive officer of Juvenile Law Center. She is professor emeritus at the University at Buffalo School of Law, where she taught for over 20 years and served as vice dean for academics, with a scholarly focus on children and the law. Ms. Mangold writes and speaks frequently on current issues impacting older youth in the justice and child welfare systems. She holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School.