To: Leadership Council of Saginaw
From: [your name]
Re: Recommendations on implementing Back to School Program to address delinquency problems
Overview of the program:
The Back to School Program aims to keep suspended students in a boot camp wherein they will serve within the school grounds and have police supervisors. Activities would include physical fitness training and instructions on life skills. The suspended students will undergo a five-day program and upon completion of the program, their record of suspension from school will be removed from the school records. In this way, the suspended kids will not roam on the streets and meet danger along the way (Crisp & Vancil, 2001).
Theoretical basis for the program:
Every individual get their personal and social foundations at their young years. This stage in their life is very critical for their development. At this stage, the youth get to have a lot of interactions from school, neighborhood and at home, and they also get to establish their identity and figure out how to belong in their society. If a teenager is exposed to too much violence and crime especially if the occurrences are just within the city, the outlook of the teenager regarding his self and the society is affected. Keeping them in school will make the youth less exposed to crime and violence. Also, if the youth understands the impact of a violation of the law (or any offense to other people and to the law) and if they also understand the consequences of committing such violations or offense to themselves, to others and to the society, it is more likely that the youth will become hesitant to commit crimes. Plus, it would give them a sense of belonging to their society especially that they become participants in the city’s growth by having no involvement in any law-violating activities.
It was found that the most effective anti-crime and anti-delinquency programs are those which address the youth and target their development (Juvenile Justice and Youth Development, 2009). The Back to School Program reported a decline in juvenile crimes and improvement in the behavior of students in the classroom.
Addressing delinquency in Saginaw:
Delinquency problem in Saginaw is high. Most committed crimes are murder, rape, burglary and assault. The rate for these crimes are very high in Saginaw compared to other cities (Uniform Crime Reports, 2009). This is alarming. The juvenile crime data was not obtained due to limited resources. However, juvenile crimes will eventually relate to adult crimes.
Implementing the program in Saginaw:
The schools will have the biggest role since it has the task to keep the students in school and not allow these students to just roam in the streets. The police officers will also have to perform other tasks as supervisors for the suspended students. This task is different from catching criminals. They will be dealing with juveniles. The guardians of the students also have participation in the program by making sure that their kids are attending school and not spending their time on anything else that are destructive for them.
The difficulty would be in assigning police supervisors since police officers are much needed in capturing criminals rather than supervising suspended students. Also, police officers are trained to catch criminals and not to become instructors for juveniles.
The program would also need fund.
This is a good program and it is recommended for implementation for the City of Saginaw.
Crisp, Dean and Jolene Vancil. 2001. Back to School: Suspension Camp puts Students to Work While Reducing Juvenile Crime. Police Chief Volume. 68:3, 40-44. Retrieved April 11, 2009 from http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/Publications/ abstract.aspx?ID=188054.
Juvenile Justice and Youth Development. 2009. Office of Policy and Management. Retrieved April 11, 2009 from http://www.ct.gov/opm/cwp/view.asp ?A=2974&Q=383614&pp=12&n=1.
Uniform Crime Reports Crime Statistics Offense And Arrest Reports. 2009. Michigan State Police. Retrieved April 11, 2009 from http://www.michigan.gov/msp/0,1607,7-123-1645_3501_4621-25744–,00.html.