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October 17, 2016

This week’s family-re­­lated news coverage included continued attention on how to make middle school a better experience, intense focus on the importance of supporting families in the work place and a look into a successful German prison model for young offenders.

Here’s How Schools Can Soften the Blow of Sixth Grade Kat Lonsdorf, NPR, October 9, 2016 An interview with Dru Tomlin, a director at the Association for Middle Level Education — an organization that has been researching best practices for middle grade students for decades, explores changes that can be instituted to make life easier for students.

A Pediatrician’s View of Paid Parental Leave NPR Staff, October 10, 2016 The author, a developmental and behavioral pediatrician at the New York University School of Medicine and president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, explores scientific research to get a better sense of the health benefits of paid family leave.

Kids in Prison: Germany Has a Different Approach, Better Results Sarah Gonzalez, WNYC, October 10, 2016 To find a successful prison system for young people, the authors looked to Germany where minors can never be tried as adults. Officials there say there is nothing about the age of 18 that makes you mentally or emotionally ready for adult prisons or adult consequences.

To Retain More Parents, the Military Offers a Better Work-Life Balance Tom Bowman, NPR, October 12, 2016 The Career Intermission Program allows service members to take one to three years off – while retaining benefits and receiving a small percentage of their usual monthly pay. The intermission program is just one of a number of Pentagon efforts to help military families, an effort that started with a strong push from the Obama White House.

The Perpetual Panic of American Parenthood Pamela Druckerman, The New York Times, October 13, 2016 A forthcoming study in The American Journal of Sociology finds that Americans with children are 12 percent less happy than non-parents, the largest “happiness gap” of 22 rich countries surveyed. The main sources of parents’ unhappiness are the lack of paid vacation and sick leave, and the high cost of child care, the authors said. The author argues that in this election season, this should be on top of the agenda so the US can catch up with the rest of the industrialized world.

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