Factors influencing recidivisim of male juvenile offenders with reading disabilities/deficiencies



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Social, adaptive, and academic skills must be acquired by today’s juvenile offenders, especially those who have disabilities, to function effectively at a job and in the community. To give juvenile offenders the opportunity to acquire these skills, juvenile justice systems must address the special academic needs of these individuals. Currently, treatment programs in the juvenile justice system do not fully remediate reading skills, such as offering reading programs and determining appropriate reading strategies to be utilized, in youth with reading disabilities or deficiencies, possibly leading to higher incidence of juvenile offenses among this population. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to identify the factors influencing recidivism of male juvenile offenders with reading disabilities and/or deficiencies. The primary research question is: To what degree do biographical measures predict recidivism in male juvenile offenders with reading disabilities and/or deficiencies? The corresponding null hypothesis to this research question is that these variables contain little variance in common with recidivism in male juvenile offenders with reading disabilities and/or deficiencies. Participants in this study included 28 adjudicated male adolescents between the ages of 10-16 who were offenders in probation services at a local county juvenile detention facility. A database was formed using the following information: data in existing juvenile records reported by probation officers, family involvement data obtained through interviews with participants, and current intellectual and reading assessment data. A quasi-experimental study using discriminant function analysis was completed on obtained data. From this analysis, conclusions were drawn to address the research question.