Judicial Council of California


California Ponders Cap on Caseloads for Dependency Court Judges

A bill in California has been introduced that would determine a caseload standard for dependency court judges who preside over child welfare proceedings. Assembly Bill 859 would require the state legislature to analyze the current average caseloads in the county-run dependency court system and identify an “appropriate” cap on the number of cases these judges could carry at any given time.


Landscape Begins to Shift for Calif. Dependency Attorneys

California advocates and legislators are gearing up to push for a second budget increase to pay court-appointed attorneys representing children in foster care across the state. At the same time, the Judicial Council of California is debating whether to revise the methodology used to determine how much counties are awarded for juvenile dependency counsel, and how many cases each attorney should be given.


Crossover Youth: A Shared Responsibility

This week, the California Child Welfare Co-Investment Partnership released a summary of their recent research and analysis efforts, entitled “Crossover Youth: A Shared Responsibility.” The first two sections of the report begin with two statistics on California youth: first, “there were 496,972 reports of [child] neglect and abuse in 2014, with 81,391 substantiated,” and second, “there were 101,531 young people referred to juvenile probation in 2014.”


Vallejo Teens Get Their Day in Court

Some Vallejo, Calif., high school students are racking up a steady stream of court appearances, but in this case they are not getting into trouble—they’re acting as court officials who determine consequences for their peers.


Taking Action to Protect Sexually Exploited Children

For as long as anyone can remember, children who are bought and sold for sex have either been ignored or, when they do catch our attention, arrested and incarcerated–and then released right back into the streets.


Getting to the Heart of Foster Children’s Problems

This article is adapted from an earlier piece that ran in the San Jose Mercury News. By Adam Pertman and Graham Wright It is heartening to hear that California’s Legislature may finally address the chronic overuse of psychotropic medications for children in foster care in that state, a problem that unfortunately exists from coast to coast.