Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $990,763)
The Juvenile Justice Section of the Division of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice (DACJJ) of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety (NCDPS) will further efforts to significantly and strategically improve its responses to delinquency and reduce youth engagement in the juvenile and criminal justice systems. Through intensive implementation and validation studies of the tools DACJJ utilizes to inform decision-making, DACJJ aims to understand whether these tools are being implemented as intended and performing as designed, and advance evidence-based policy and practice. DACJJ will develop an innovative approach, using machine-learning techniques, to improve the practice of matching youth to the services they need. The program aims to reduce violations and other incidents that occur in Youth Development Centers (YDCs) by designing, implementing, and evaluating a pilot restorative justice program. A research partner will conduct methodologically rigorous research and assist the juvenile justice system (JJS) to translate findings to inform changes in policies, practices, and programs.