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NCJ Number: 77850 Find in a Library
Title: Juvenile Delinquents - A Relatively Untapped Population for Special Education Professionals
Journal: Behavioral Disorders  Volume:2  Issue:2  Dated:(1977)  Pages:95-101
Author(s): J F Mesinger
Date Published: 1977
Page Count: 7
Type: Statistics
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The characteristics of juvenile offenders processed in Virginia during 1974 are reviewed to demonstrate the need for more special education professionals to help socially disturbed youth.
Abstract: Although Congress included the category of seriously socially disturbed youth among those to be helped through Public Law 89-164, little effort has been made to treat this population group. The Virginia data on 1,360 juveniles processed into State care demonstrate that about 14 percent may have qualified as educable or trainable mental retardates. Although less than 7 percent of the total were of elementary school age, the majority were so educationally handicapped that they needed instruction in basic reading and arithmetic skills. In addition, 18 percent were from culturally deprived backgrounds, while more than 15.6 percent showed moderate to severe distortions of perceptual motor performance on the Bender Gestalt tests. Eighty-one percent were considered to have moderate to severe problems in psychosexual adjustment, and over 30 percent were moderate to severe drug users. These data suggest that the total population would be an exceedingly difficult one to teach. Motivation is a major problem, followed by behavior management, and specific and general academic remediation. More special education resource teachers are needed, as well as special training. Special emphasis is needed on cooperative training programs between colleges and correctional authorities. Related literature is reviewed. Data tables and a 19-item reference list are included.
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Educationally disadvantaged persons; Juvenile Delinquents with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities; Juvenile offender statistics; Remedial education; Socially challenged; Virginia
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