Best Practices

Ages 6–11


  • Provide family-strengthening/effectiveness training to improve parenting skills, build life skills in youth, and strengthen family bonds.
  • Promote emotional and social competencies in elementary school-age children, while simultaneously enhancing the educational process in the classroom.
  • Increase prosocial peer bonds, and strengthen students’ attachment and commitment to schools.
  • Increase teachers’ classroom management, interactive teaching, and cooperative learning skills.
  • Develop gender-specific programs.
  • Improve parents’ involvement in and support for their children’s academic progress.
  • Steer at-risk youth from delinquent peers to prosocial groups and provide positive peer modeling.
  • Engage community groups, individuals, and institutions to respond to the multiple needs of youth and their families through case management for the highest-risk youth and their families; provide an array of services, after-school activities, and community activities to strengthen families.
  • Mobilize community leaders and Boys & Girls Club staff to recruit at-risk and gang-involved youth into club programs in a nonstigmatizing way through direct outreach efforts to discuss local gang issues, and design a strategy to offer youth alternatives to the gang lifestyle.
  • Educate youth to modify their perception that gang membership is beneficial.
  • Involve grassroots organizations in the creation of violence-free zones.
  • Provide social support for disadvantaged and at-risk youth from helping teachers, responsible adults, parents, and peers.
  • Provide after-school programs.


  • Build a comprehensive framework for the integration of child and adolescent services programming that links the juvenile justice system with human service and other related agencies, including schools, child welfare services, mental health agencies, and social services.
  • Create an infrastructure consisting of client information exchange, cross-agency client referrals, a networking protocol, interagency councils, and service integration.
  • Establish a wraparound service delivery process for children and their families.
  • Integrate the wraparound service delivery process within a “system of care.”
  • Create a system of graduated sanctions to control offenders and protect the public.
  • Create a continuum of immediate intervention, intermediate sanctions, community confinement, and secure confinement options for offenders.
  • Develop gender-specific programs.


  • Develop a Comprehensive Gang Prevention, Intervention, and Suppression Strategy.
    1. Acknowledge the gang problem.
    2. Form an agreement among stakeholders to work together in addressing the gang problem.
    3. Set goals and objectives.
    4. Develop and integrate relevant services, strategies, and graduated sanctions.
    5. Form an Interagency Intervention Team that targets gang members for interagency services and sanctions and provides case management.
    6. Create a one-stop center that addresses gang involvement and general delinquency involvement with individual problem assessment, services, service referral, and recreational activities.
    7. Implement an evaluation of outcomes.
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