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Developing Accountability in the Lives of Youth: Defining the Operational Features of Juvenile Treatment Courts

NCJ Number
Drug Court Review Volume: 7 Issue: 1 Dated: 2010 Pages: 125-170
Pamela Linden, Ph.D.; Shelly Cohen, Ph.D.; Robyn Cohen; Ann Bader, M.P.A.; Michael Magnani, J.D.
Date Published
46 pages
This article describes efforts to develop a comprehensive and informative training curriculum for juvenile treatment courts.
Data were collected from four operational juvenile treatment courts in New York State. Methods included interviewing treatment court staff, youth participants and community providers; holding parent/guardian focus groups; and organizing a concept-mapping exercise with representatives of each of the major treatment court roles. Additional site visits to five national model court sites provided insight into how divergent models address the common problem of working with youth with multiple, complex needs in the juvenile justice system. Findings led to the development of a three-day training curriculum for planning and operational juvenile treatment court teams. During this training, participants developed measurable action plans for implementation of newly learned strategies. Pre- and post-training surveys of teams from the pilot training provided further insight into the needs of jurisdictions in working with juvenile justice-involved youth. Participants reported that the time together as a team was particularly beneficial. (Published Abstract)