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Literature Review

Literature Review

Literature review

When a young person under the age of eighteen is charged with a crime the case is handled in the Juvenile Justice System. The Juvenile Justice System deals with youth who are caught and convicted of a crime. It is intended to punish and rehabilitate adolescents who show criminal behavior. The intentions of the juvenile justice system are to intervene early in criminal behavior to prevent adolescents from engaging in those types of behaviors as adults. Our topic focuses on “Is the juvenile justice system effective? How do youth offenders re-enter society after being a part of the system?” The following articles will help us better understand the challenges youth have after being release from the system

The Juvenile Justice system

According to Michael Bullies, P. Yovanoff, & E. Havel (2002), more than 100,000 youth are incarcerated in the United States yearly. 86% of youth that are incarcerated are boy and between 12% and 70% of youths might have a disability that qualifies them for special education. The researchers stated that many individuals who display criminal behavior in adolescence would continue to display those behaviors in adulthood. Approximately 50% of youth that are released from the juvenile correctional system will return to the juvenile justice system. After being release form the system, few youth will enroll in public school and fewer will earn their high school diploma or GED. They made a study with 759 youths who were released from the juvenile system and they found that only 12% completed high school or their GED after being released. They also found that they have trouble finding work after being released from the juvenile justice system.

The 5-Year TRACS Project

Michael Bullies, P. Yovanoff, & E. Havel (2002) did a 5-Year TRACS (Transition Research on Adjudicated Youth in Community Settings) project that examined the facility-to-community transition of 531 incarcerated youth which 58% of them had a disability. About 40% of youth returned to the juvenile correctional system within 12 months after being release and 47% were engaged in work or school at 6 months after they were released. Participants who were engaged in work or school at 6 months after release we less likely to return to the juvenile correctional system. The results pointed out the importance of providing interventions after being release from the system and helping those youth find work and school placements in order to keep them from going back into the system.

Parents and the Juvenile Justice System

Kearse B. Geraldine & Julie A. Hirsch (2002), asked 105 young offenders and their parents to participate in their research, the researchers wanted to find out at what age was the child’s first offense, they found the age of their first criminal offense was between the age of 11. They asked the parents about their opinion about the school, neighborhood, and juvenile justice system. 50% of the parents believed that the schools should take more responsibility for student problems. 36% of the parents report that labeling a student causes problems, by labeling a student for bad behavior the entire school than starts to have lower expectations for the student. When it comes to community 50% of the parents believed that a volunteer or job program for youth would keep children out of trouble. Parents say that there aren’t enough activities for children and parents had said that their children lacked positive role models. When it comes to the juveniles justice system 60% of the parents say that there were no prevention/primary services to support families until after their child got trouble with the law once the child was in trouble with the law that’s when the families receive help. When parents received services, 30% of parents stated that they get slow service. 20% of parents said that there were limited resources and 20% of the parents claimed that the agency blamed them for their child’s problems and perceives them as bad parents when they asked for help. 20% of parents said that the only good thing of the juvenile justice system was the family support group, which gave parents a chance to hear other families experiencing the same problems, and share information about parenting.When asking the adolescence about their neighborhood 60% of them felt like their neighborhood didn’t like children and 50% of them said that their community lack things for children to do.


Bullis, M., Yovanoff, P., Mueller, G., & Havel, E. (2002). Life on the “Outs” – Examination of the Facility-to-Community Transition of Incarcerated Youth. Exceptional Children69(1), 7.

Geraldine, K. B., & Hirsch, J. A. (2002). Innocence lost: Case studies of children in the juvenile justice system. The Journal of Negro Education, 71(3), 205-217.

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