skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 92546 Find in a Library
Title: Folk-Lore and Fact in Truancy Research
Journal: British Journal of Criminology  Volume:23  Issue:4  Dated:(October 1983)  Pages:336-357
Author(s): J D Pratt
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 22
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: The research of Berg et al raises several ethical, legal, penal, and methodological issues. Berg's research monitored the effect of the use of adjournments by Leeds (England) magistrates when disposing of truancy cases.
Abstract: The use of adjournments, rather than supervision, for some truants is, prima facie; a more effective means of improving school attendance. Yet, the claim that adjournments 'work' for the truant population as a whole needs qualification. Ethical and legal questions accompany the practice of randomization of human subjects. The practice of sentencing juveniles on the basis of chance appears to contravene the specific statutory rule that courts shall have regard for the welfare of a young person. The phenomenon of truancy receives different considerations in the Leeds juvenile court. The sheer volume of educational cases seems out of all proportion. The Leeds court relies disproportionately heavily on the use of care orders in truancy cases, at a time when trends in England and Wales as a whole are set in the opposite direction. The positivistic dominance of this and much truancy research contributes to folklore rather than knowledge and understanding. Truancy should be placed in the full context of truants' lives. Possibly the most disturbing alternative is to continue accepting that many young people are disturbed or pathological in some way because they leave school. Some recent research lends empirical support to the earlier subcultural arguments that schools themselves may be the cause of disaffection.
Index Term(s): Code of ethics; Deferred prosecution programs; Great Britain/United Kingdom; Truancy
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.