Transforming Juvenile Probation: Restructuring Probation Terms to Promote Success
This guide outlines a new way of thinking about juvenile probation term lengths and termination processes and provides research-informed guidance for term structure to promote youth success. Probation terms should be only as long as is necessary to connect youth with any needed supports and services in their communities and should be designed to minimize disruption to young people’s lives and development.
This approach asserts that the vast majority of youth probation terms can be completed in six months or less. In the long run, probation agencies should be working to bolster and reinforce community capacity to meet the needs of youth and their caregivers, and to promote public safety without relying on the juvenile justice system and its associated risks for youth.