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Investigation of the Effectiveness of a Developmental Mentoring Model as an Intervention/Prevention Strategy for Juveniles of Varying Levels of Risk for Delinquency among Middle School Youth in Metro Louisville

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2014
46 pages
This study determined whether cross-age mentoring is an effective model for preventing juvenile delinquency among middle-school children (sixth graders) with varying degrees of risk for delinquency.
In year 1 of the evaluation, which was conducted in Metro Louisville, KY, mentees gave high satisfaction ratings to the mentoring they received. They described themselves as good students; however, only a few reported liking school "a lot." Few reported skipping school, but a moderate percentage had been suspended from school. There was no statistically significant difference between types of mentoring received and change in satisfaction with various aspects related to school and there was no statistically significant relationship between types of mentoring received and change in well-being. Participants in the mentoring group that focused on family relationships had statistically significant higher family (well-being/functioning) scores than participants in risk-reduction mentoring, but not those in instrumental mentoring. In year 2 of the program, between 4 percent and 36 percent of mentees reported they had been suspended from school. Out of the 14 measures found to be significant, 12 were associated with connectedness. There was no statistically significant difference in change scores between types of mentoring received and domains of relationship satisfaction and school satisfaction. The authors advise that these results, overall, should be viewed cautiously, because the sample sizes for many of the analyses were small, and the quasi nature of the research design may have influenced the results, possibly skewing the findings. Under the program, mentees were recruited to receive mentoring from high school juniors and seniors trained as mentors. Mentees received one of three conditions: relational, instrumental, or risk-reduction. Data were collected on a set of indictors at baseline, program completion, and 3 months post-program completion. Extensive tables and references

Date Published: January 1, 2014