U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Nashville, Davidson County, Tennessee Juvenile Court Truancy Reduction Program, Final Report

NCJ Number
Date Published
October 2000
21 pages
This report presents the methodology and findings from a confirmation of the evaluation results for the Nashville/Davidson County Juvenile Court Truancy Reduction Program (Tennessee), which is designed to intervene in truancy before the student comes to the attention of the juvenile court.
The goals of the Truancy Reduction program (TRP) are to increase attendance and get children safely to and from school. The TRP staff consists of probation officers under the employ of the Juvenile Court, as well as probation officer assistants who are residents of the public housing community at the time of their hiring. The program operates out of public housing units that have been converted into offices and meeting areas. On the day a K-8 grade student who resides in one of the targeted developments has his or her third unexcused absence, the TRP office receives a fax from the school that provides the child's name and address, along with the name of parent or guardian. The student is placed on the TRP caseload. TRP tasks are to make home visits to determine reasons for unexcused absences and attempt to resolve problems before a formal petition is filed; the intervention of Community Advisory Boards to attempt to resolve problems; enrollment in a "suspension school" under the supervision of juvenile court personnel; and a summer program. Data sources for this study included juvenile court TRP records and metro schools attendance records for a period of 2 years. The study found that students who participated in the TRP decreased their truant behavior; a 14-percent reduction was achieved. Based on the success of this program, the report recommends that juvenile courts explore truancy reduction programming as an essential component of their service delivery system. If juvenile courts can identify truant children early and reduce their truancy, the link between truancy and the development of delinquent behaviors can be broken. 10 tables and 16 references

Date Published: October 1, 2000