Support Positions of the Alameda County League Council

These positions have been adopted at the annual meetings of each of the Leagues of Alameda County. Changing or dropping one of these positions must be approved by 5 of the 7 leagues of Alameda County. Action on any of these positions must be approved by a majority of the Leagues.


CHILDREN'S MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES (Adopted 1979)
The Leagues of Women Voters of Alameda County support the need for Children's Mental Health Services and recommend the following:

A. Increase the priority given Children's Mental Health Services in the County Mental health program and budget.

B. Retain present service and ensure equal access to Day Treatment Service throughout the County.

C. Focus on prevention and early intervention by:

  1. Increased education of parents and public
  2. Utilization of school resources where feasible. 

D. Finance these services by:

  1. Active pursuit of all available sources of funds.
  2. Coordination of County, State, and Federal budget deadlines
  3. Sufficient funds for a service from the level of government that mandates that service.

E. Make most efficient use of funds by:

  1. Retention and expansion of contracts with private providers
  2. Support for Case Management system of services
  3. Increased coordination and communication among all public and private service providers and continuation of the Interagency Council.

ALAMEDA COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION, ALAMEDA COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS, ALAMEDA COUNTY OFFICE OF EDUCATION (Adopted 2007)
I. Position in Brief: Support an efficient, effective and equitable balance of responsibility and authority among the levels of governance with accountability to the public and that results in providing services that best meet needs of students and the local school districts.
A. Efficiency: Provide those services (education, training, fiscal, oversight) to county school programs and district school programs that do not duplicate those provided by districts or other agencies
B. Effectiveness: Provide those services that best meet the needs and interests of local districts. Constantly monitor services to determine their effectiveness and remove or improve those that are not meeting district goals.
C. Equitable Balance of Responsibility and Authority for Governance

  1. Establish policies that delineate the powers and functions of each entity where not covered explicitly in the Education Code to ensure an equitable balance of responsibility and authority for governance and to enhance accountability.
  2. Provide for consolidation of functions between and among county offices of education to deal with area-wide problems. Consider consolidation of functions to achieve cost savings and improve the quality of service and equity.

D. Accountability to the Public

  1. Ensure that both the Board and the Superintendent abide by the tenets of the Brown Act, and the Freedom of Information Act and the California Public Records Act.
  2. Maintain public visibility by utilizing technology to keep constituents informed about actions taken by the Board and the County Superintendent.
  3. Advertise upcoming elections for Board members' and the County Superintendent's seat to encourage contested elections. This will allow the public to learn about the candidates' credentials and the issues so they can make informed choices.
  4. Develop a collaborative Annual Work Plan to set up measurable goals to be used in the annual evaluation of both Board Members' and Superintendent's performance. These evaluations will then be helpful in the Superintendent salary-setting process and for measuring progress toward established goals.

II. Monitoring
The League's role should be to:

  1. Continue observing County Board of Education meetings to ensure compliance with the Brown Act and Education Code.
  2. Monitor the County Office website to ensure that constituents have access to current and complete information concerning actions taken by the County Office/Superintendent and the Board.
  3. Review Grand Jury comments and recommendations pertaining to the County Board and County Superintendent and support those that support the improvement of efficient, effective, and appropriate governance and fiscal management of those entities.
  4. Monitor the governance model to determine if there is any interest by the public in changing the method of selecting a County Superintendent.

JUVENILE JUSTICE (Adopted 1977)
The Alameda County Council of the League of Women Voters supports policies that promote services to meet the needs of Alameda County and minimize delinquency.

A. The County Council supports effective and responsible decision-making for youth at the county level.

Specifically the council supports:

  1. Continuing evaluation of the Alameda County Probation Department Juvenile Division to ensure that its goals and functions are clear and effective;
  2. Continued citizen input into all countywide juvenile justice programs;
  3. Coordination of all community programs for Alameda County youth to ensure that the needs of the communities are met and that duplication of services is avoided;
  4. Citizen involvement in setting priorities for diversion and prevention services;
  5. Continued evaluation and accountability to the public of programs funded by public moneys.
  6. County decision-making bodies:

a. Appointments to commissions that reflect the diversified population of the county;

b. Guidelines for commission members which are clear statements of their responsibilities and authority;

c. Adequate staff;

d. Assessment of limited number of terms;

e. Reimbursement to commissioners for personal expenses, i.e., transportation and baby-sitting.

B. The County Council supports a coordinated multidimensional concept of services which could include:

  1. Vocational training;
  2. Programs that provide jobs and job training for youth;
  3. Recreational opportunities
  4. Counseling for youth and their families, both long-term and for crises;
  5. Mental health services which meet the needs of youth, supported by adequate funding, i.e., residential treatment centers for juveniles;
  6. Youth diversion programs:

a. Staff and volunteers having close ties to the community of the juveniles being served;

b. Involvement of youth in program planning, implementation and evaluation;

c. Integration into projects available with other than just delinquent youths;

d. Adequate program facilities.

C. The County Council encourages school districts to deal effectively with pupil welfare and pupil attendance, i.e., truancy, child neglect, child abuse and severe behavior problems.

D. The County Council supports greater community awareness of the problems and needs of youth and programs that are currently available.