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School and Community Interventions To Prevent Serious and Violent Offending

NCJ Number
Date Published
Catalano, R. F., Loeber, R., McKinney, K. C.
The Study Group on Serious and Violent Juvenile Offenders concludes that timely comprehensive school-based and community-based interventions hold the greatest potential for preventing serious violent juvenile offending.
The Study Group examined five types of school interventions: structured playground activities, behavioral consultation, behavioral monitoring and reinforcement, metal detectors, and schoolwide reorganization. These interventions varied in effectiveness. Programs that monitored student behavior and reinforced attendance and academic progress increased positive school behavior and academic achievement while decreasing delinquency. Although metal detectors reduced the number of weapons brought into schools, they did not apparently decrease weapon carrying or violence outside schools. The Study Group also examined eight types of community interventions: citizen mobilization, situational prevention, comprehensive citizen intervention, mentoring, afterschool recreation programs, policing strategies, policy changes, and mass media interventions. Several of these interventions showed positive results in reducing risk and enhancing protective factors. Studies with long-term follow-up show that certain programs were effective in reducing juvenile crime and substance abuse. 88 references
Date Created: August 13, 2014