Posts By: Piazadora Footman

Child Left Behind – My son fell apart in a stressful school environment

It was homework time in my house one evening last fall. I called my son into the living room. He stormed in demanding popcorn. I told him, “No, not until you do your homework.” Why did I say that? He began screaming that he hated me. He had started telling me he hated me every time things didn’t go his way.

For months, homework had been a daily conflict. This time, I … Read More

Child welfare systems around the country celebrate National Reunification Month.

June is National Reunification Month, an effort spearheaded by the American Bar Association’s Parent Attorney Project to celebrate parents’ accomplishments in safely reunifying with childrenin foster care and to recognize the professionals who support them. Here, the American Bar Association’s Scott Trowbridge describes the impact of reunification celebrations:

Q: How did National Reunification Month start?

A: The idea for reunification celebrations started local, with jurisdictions that wanted to recognize the efforts … Read More

“My Voice Can Make a Change”

When my depression kicks in, I don’t bathe and I barely eat. I just stay in my bed and sob and be mad for reasons I don’t even know.

Last winter I was depressed for about two weeks and missing work at Rise because of it. For the next issue of the magazine, I was supposed to interview a professor at Harvard. The deadline was quickly approaching. My editor, Nora, called to see if … Read More

Seen and Heard – I was able to listen to my son when I felt heard

Most parents whose children enter foster care have to take parenting classes in order to get their children back. I went to two parentingclasses that didn’t help before I found a program that worked for me.

The ones that didn’t help were the ones where the instructor read to us from a big parenting skills book or played old videos of moms trying to get their kids to listen. Then the instructor … Read More

Holding Family Court to a Higher Standard- A positive drug test alone is not neglect, says NJ Supreme Court.

In February, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled that a positive drug test alone, with no other evidence of harm to a child, is not enough toprove that a child was abused or neglected. The court said that, before a mother can be charged with abuse or neglect in the state of New Jersey, the state has to show in some concrete way that the baby was harmed by the mother’s drug use … Read More

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