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Could after school programs reduce juvenile crime?

There are a variety of reasons why juveniles end up involved in activities that could get them in trouble with the law. One of those reasons could be best described as boredom. Statistics from the U.S. Office of Justice seem to support this notion. According the agency, the time following the end of school on school days—between 3 and 7 p.m.—are the hours when violent crimes involving juveniles most often occur.

Some organizations believe that after school programs for teens could have an impact on the number of juvenile crimes that occur. Accordingly, after-school programs exist at high schools throughout the country. Afterschool Alliance reports that approximately 2 million high school students are involved in an after-school program. The programs can cover a wide variety of topics from how to start a business to robotics. The idea is to provide the teens with something more interesting to do than get into trouble.

When someone is in their teens they have their entire life in front of them. Accordingly, it is imperative that they do not do anything that could dramatically impact that future and instead of college or a job send them into the criminal justice system. Since at that age many kids are prone to engaging in activities that are not smart, it is not surprising that issues do arise. When parents find their children are in this position, the best thing they can do is enlist the help of a lawyer with experience handling juvenile crimes.

Source: U.S. News and World Report, “After-School Programs Can Help Teens at Risk of Dropping Out,” Alexandra Pannoni, Nov. 3, 2014

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