Who Will Graduate? is the article by Gary Sweeten for Justice Quarterly, where the issues of first-time arrest and court appearance, their effects on education and graduation, and participation of youth in numerous court trials are concerned. The peculiar feature of this article is author’s attention to past research and current conditions that become crucial for the analysis of why juvenile arrests take place and how these arrests may influence further lives of students, their families, and people around. The effects of arrests remain to be considerable for people, because all these detrimental activities may be crucial for both delinquent and not delinquent young people. In this article, Gary Sweeten (2006) proves that effects of first-time arrest and first-time court participation cannot be the same, and education outcomes turn out to be more serious in case of court appearance than in case of arrest because of “official sanctions with educational achievement.”
Court-dependent youth “face many educational challenges…in placements…stress of court appearance, separation from siblings and parents, being in foster care” (Castrechini, 2009), and the discussions about education outcomes help to analyze why youth supports such destructive behavior and what has to be done to improve situation and help young people comprehend what is right and what is wrong. The article under consideration is powerful enough; the author presents not only own ideas about the issue of court involvement but also adds real life facts about police activities during the year of 2001 – more than 2.3 million juvenile has been arrested within one year (Sweeten). The use of criminological theory is another considerable point that captivates the reader of this article. Labeling theories, propensity studies, deterrence points become the central ones in this article. With the help of all these studies, people get a chance to evaluate relations between sanctions and education and become aware of the mechanisms, which turn on automatically in case juvenile and court system unite.
In this article, the studies of the National Longitudinal Survey of Use are used in order to show how the situation of juvenile court involvement looked like a couple years ago. Current research touches upon the ideas of why young people break laws and why they do not try to think about future, about consequences, about the outcomes of their activities, and about their families. The idea of official sanctions is present in both past and present studies, because high school graduation undergoes considerable effects. Even non-arrested youth has to go to courts and this presence is reported and stored. Court involvement deprives them of the opportunity to continue living and forgetting about the things, which bothered them at courts.
In general, the article under consideration is captivating and informative indeed. The reader is able to find out information about juvenile court involvement, comprehend how significant the outcomes may be, and realize that effects of court appearance become more detrimental than arrests without court appearance. The vast majority of young people face challenges day by day in their lives; however, their violations should lead them to courts and influence their education. In fact, the main value of this article is a kind of warning that it is still possible to change and improve everything, and if juvenile cares about own future, they should consider this information and think about the ways of how to make their future safer.
Castrechini, S. (2009). Educational Outcomes for Court-Dependent Youth in San Mateo County. The John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities. Web.
Sweeten, G. (2006). Who Will Graduate? Disruption of High School Education by Arrest and Court Involvement. Justice Quarterly, 23(4), 462-480.