Too Many Teens

Preventing Unnecessary Out-of-Home Placements

Posted February 13, 2015
By the Annie E. Casey Foundation
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The child welfare system was created to care for abused and neglected children. But too often, teenagers are landing in the system because they simply aren’t getting along with their parents. This paper traces Casey’s efforts to learn from communities that are preventing teens from landing in the system by helping families while the teen remains at home. A survey of the states, interviews with experts, secondary research and visits to several communities show common elements of successful programs.The paper presents information on related laws and policies, funding sources and programs for families while including the infrastructure and services needed to support such initiatives. 

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations

Key Takeaway

Child welfare and juvenile justice systems can reduce teen entry caused by youth behavior issues

Model jurisdictions have achieved significant reductions in teen entries by offering high-quality screening and assessment and timely access to a range of appropriate services. Strong leadership, flexible, sustainable funding and collaboration among child-serving agencies are also key factors contributing to this success.