Juvenile probation allows youth to remain in their communities while under the supervision of the Probation Officer or the Juvenile Court in formal cases. Juvenile Probation can be used as an informal diversion for youth who are identified as low-risk and/or first-time offenders or it can be used after the disposition (“sentencing”) hearing. While under any probationary period, youth may be required to follow imposed terms and conditions developed by either the Probation Officer or the Juvenile Court.
Juvenile probation programs are set up to help youth correct their behaviors. Juvenile probation officers rely on parents/guardians and/or pro-social adults close to the youth to support, encourage and assist in the program. A majority of youth under juvenile probation comply with imposed rules, successfully complete a program and never re-enter into the juvenile justice system.
In cases where youth struggle with following imposed rules and/or programming, the juvenile probation officer attempts to redirect the youth’s behavior and encourages them to comply. The juvenile probation officer is expected to exhaust all low & intermediate responses prior to a formal filing of a violation of probation. If a violation of probation is warranted, the Court could order more intensive counseling programs, further restrict the freedom of the youth, place the youth in the juvenile facility under a commitment program, or order the youth to an out-of-home placement in an approved Short Term Residential Therapeutic Program (STRTP).