Welcome to the Department of Justice, Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller

For immediate release -- April 26, 2000.
Contact Bob Brammer, 515-281-6699

Miller Applauds Move to put Juvenile Court
School Liaisons in More Schools

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller applauded action by the Legislature late Tuesday to fund an additional 25 Juvenile Court School Liaisons to work with delinquent and at-risk youth in junior high and middle schools around the state. The Legislature increased school liaison funding by $650,000 for next year.

"This is a proven program that helps fight juvenile delinquency and improves learning opportunities for all students," Miller said.

"Liaisons work with a Juvenile Court Officer to supervise students who are on probation," he said. "They also work with individual youth who have been identified as at risk. This is one of the most effective things we can do to prevent juvenile crime. Liaisons also respond to disruptive classroom behavior so our schools are safer and all kids can learn better."

Governor Tom Vilsack and Attorney General Miller sought expansion of the Juvenile Court School Liaison funding to increase the number of schools participating in the program. Liaisons work through cooperative arrangements between local schools and the Juvenile Court. There are currently approximately 130 Juvenile Court School Liaisons. Funding of $650,000 for the additional 25 liaisons is part of the DHS appropriations bill approved late Tuesday and sent to the Governor.

"Great things can happen when schools and the Juvenile Court work together," Miller said. "Schools are the best place for the Juvenile Court to reach youth. And the presence of the Juvenile Court Liaison in the school helps ensure a safe environment, free of interruptions, where students can learn. There are two important results: learning goes up and juvenile crime goes down. Everyone benefits."

Miller's office co-hosts a conference each year to provide training for the Juvenile Court School Liaisons. "We have learned that Liaisons succeed because they work intensively with delinquent and at-risk youth," he said. "They see the youth every day and get to know their schools, neighborhoods and families. This frequency and intensity is key to success."

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