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Delinquency Prevention - Selective Organizational Change in the School

NCJ Number
J W Little; M Skarrow
Date Published
74 pages
This publication describes school-based organizational changes that can contribute to reduction of juvenile delinquency and strengthen factors favorable to law-abiding behavior.
It is designed for use in conjunction with a larger volume entitled 'Delinquency Prevention: Theories and Strategies.' It is also intended to aid the development and implementation of effective school-based delinquency prevention programs on a relatively modest scale. The information is intended for State and local program designers, school staff, parents, government staff, and State agency representatives. A set of guiding assumptions about appropriate strategies is proposed. Schools' routine policies and practices are examined with respect to impacts on delinquency prevention. An implementation sequence for organizational change is presented, based on a set of strategic principles. The implementation sequence's five stages include entering into relationships with local schools, assessing the school situation, choosing a target for change, making the change, and evaluating the effects. It is concluded that schools are central to young people's lives and do make a difference to delinquency. Curriculum, sorting and tracking procedures, grading policies and practices, rules and disciplinary procedures, and teacher-student interactions are all issues relevant to delinquency prevention. Figures and a bibliography listing 29 references are included.