CAP

CAP Courses: 2005-06

In 2005-06, CAP offered the following three courses:

Child Advocacy Law

Prof. Elizabeth Bartholet
Prof. Martha Minow

2 classroom credits – Fall
3 or 4 optional clinical credits – Fall

Meets Thursday, 8:15 - 10:15 AM, Fall
Hauser Room 102

This course will focus on children's rights and interests in the context of family, education, and the larger society, and consider how our society shapes the meaning of childhood. We will look at what role the government does and does not play in supporting families so that they can provide children with what they need, in the U.S. as compared to many other countries, and assess the potential of programs we have designed to provide special support to fragile families, such as early home visitation and family preservation. We will look at how law divides responsibility for children between parents and the state, and consider how the balance should be drawn. We will look at law and policy governing parent rights, child abuse and neglect, foster care, adoption (domestic and international), and education, including special education and "adequacy" issues. Throughout we will think about how children's advocates could change law and policy to create a better world for children.

Students can opt to do Child Advocacy Program (CAP) clinical fieldwork placements for additional clinical credit. See Child Advocacy Clinical Workshop course description for the kinds of placements available. Students who wish to exercise this option must do so through the Office of Clinical Programs. Please refer to the Clinical Legal Education section of the Harvard Law School Catalog for the drop/add deadlines for all clinical courses.

Participation in this course (regardless of whether the student chooses to do a related clinical placement) will give the student a preference for admission to the Child Advocacy Clinical Workshop and related clinical placements in the Spring. Enrollment in the Spring Child Advocacy Clinical Workshop is encouraged but not required.

There will be a take-home examination. Students may opt to write a paper in lieu of the examination so long as the paper adequately addresses issues covered in the course. Students may also write a more substantial paper for an additional credit, which may be used to satisfy the School's Written Work Requirement or to earn additional optional written work credit. Cross-registrants are welcome.

Child Advocacy Clinical Workshop

Prof. Elizabeth Bartholet
Ms. Jessica Budnitz

2 classroom credits – Spring
3 or 4 required clinical credits – Spring
2 optional clinical credits – Winter

Meets Wednesday, 4:45 - 6:45 PM, Spring
Hauser Room 103

The Child Advocacy Clinical Workshop is linked with a set of new clinical fieldwork placement opportunities. This new clinical program is designed to educate students about the wide variety of ways in which they can use their legal abilities to work for children, and encourage critical thinking about the pros and cons of different approaches.

The fieldwork component will place students in a range of different settings with lawyers representing children in individual advocacy contexts, with legal organizations promoting systemic change through impact litigation and/or legislative reform, and with grassroots organizing initiatives. For instance:

  • In the child welfare area students may work with the state care and protective organization that is supposed to guard children against abuse and neglect, with an early home visitation program that focuses on supporting fragile families, or with a non-profit that promotes international adoption.
  • In the education law area students may work with an organization promoting education reform or with an organization advocating for the special education needs of children impacted by trauma.
  • In the juvenile justice area students may work with an organization fighting to improve our juvenile justice system or do individual casework on behalf of youth in the system.

Students will work on a huge range of projects for these organizations, demonstrating the myriad ways in which reform efforts can be advanced.

While most placements will be in the Boston/Cambridge area, some placements will be available with child advocacy organizations elsewhere for students who sign up for the January clinical placement option. All January placement students will be required to continue their fieldwork in the spring term, and to participate in the Spring Clinical Workshop.

In the weekly clinical workshop students will bring their different fieldwork experiences into the classroom so that all can learn from the rich combination of fieldwork experiences, and debate the value of different approaches. Each student will do one presentation during the term, often in combination with their fieldwork supervisor, giving a sense for their project, their organization, and how their project fits within their organization's larger child advocacy agenda.

Clinical workshop course requirements will include regular attendance, and active participation in discussion. Grading will be based on a combination of each student's presentation and related packet, contributions to class discussion throughout the term, and the clinical fieldwork. Students may in addition use their project as the basis for writing a substantial paper for an additional credit, which may be used to satisfy the School's Written Work Requirement or to earn additional optional written work credit.

Students must enroll in this course through the Office of Clinical Programs. Enrolled students will have an opportunity to indicate their preferences among planned placements and will be placed to the degree possible in accord with their preferences. Please refer to the Clinical Legal Education section of the Harvard Law School Catalog for the drop/add deadlines for all clinical courses. To participate in CAP clinical placements during 2005-2006, law students should participate in the online Clinical Pre-Registration Lottery held on April 18 and April 19, 2005. To learn more about CAP clinical placements, students can attend the Clinical Forum sponsored by the Office of Clinical Programs on Monday April 18, 2005 from 6:00 - 8:00 PM (location TBA). CAP faculty and staff will be available to answer questions about clinical work.

 While there is no prerequisite for this course, a preference will be given in the event that the course is overenrolled to students who have taken one of the following courses: Child Advocacy Law, Child Advocacy Policy Workshop , Family Law, Future of the Family seminar.

Child Advocacy Policy Workshop

Prof. Elizabeth Bartholet
Ms. Jessica Budnitz

2 classroom credits – Fall-Spring

Meets Thursday, 5:00 - 7:00 PM, Fall-Spring
Pound Rm 107

This course will bring into the classroom as visiting lecturers a series of leading child welfare and education advocates and policymakers from different fields (e.g., law, medicine, social science, academia, child welfare agencies, state and federal legislatures), engaging students in important debates as to how best to advance children's interests, and exposing students to a range of career paths relevant to this work. We will focus on issues involving child welfare (abuse and neglect, foster care, adoption both domestic and international), education (including both special education and "adequacy" litigation), and juvenile justice. Click here for a schedule of the 2005-06 speakers and topics.

The course will meet for two hours once every two weeks throughout the fall and spring terms. Receptions will follow the class meetings so that students will have a chance to talk informally with the visiting lecturers, as well as the Faculty facilitating the discussion and those from the outside child advocacy community invited to participate. Each student will also have the opportunity to attend one or more of the dinners involving the visiting lecturers, Faculty, and interested others, which will take place following the reception.

Course requirements will consist of written questions or comments on the readings turned in prior to class meetings, and/or brief reaction papers turned in following class meetings. Students may also write a more substantial paper for an additional credit, which may be used to satisfy the School's Written Work Requirement or to earn additional optional written work credit.

Participation in this course will give the student a preference for admission to the Child Advocacy Clinical Workshop and related clinical placements in the Spring. Cross-registrants are welcome.

Last modified: July 01, 2009

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