Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Vedder, Clyde B. (Clyde Bennett), 1903-||Schindler, Paul T.||More, Douglas M.

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Legacy Department

Department of Sociology


Juvenile delinquency; Juvenile delinquency--Illinois--De Kalb


The delinquency rate in the past few years has risen sharply, accounting for a substantial and disproportionate part of the national crime rate. The usual attempts at controlling delinquency have not succeeded at curbing this trend. It is now time to attempt to find some new alternatives to the futile efforts of the past. This study is concerned with just such an alternative, the community approach to the control and prevention of juvenile delinquency. This is not actually a new type of program but it is just recently being implemented and studied. Social control, the underlying theory of the community approach and its application, are discussed in this paper, as well as an explanation of what the community approach is and how it is organized within the local area. For a more detailed understanding of the community program this study has focused on a particular program located in DeKalb, Illinois. This study of the DeKalb Municipal Youth Counselor Program is divided into two phases. The first phase is an exploratory one discussing the program and the agencies involved, and analyzing the contributions of each. The second phase is concerned with evaluating the level of development that the Municipal Youth Counselor Program had reached at the onset of this investigation. This was accomplished by using the "Scale for Appraisal of Community Progress in Delinquency Prevention and Control." In the seven areas that were evaluated the Municipal Youth Counselor Program proved to be at the "Marginal" level of development in four of them. These areas were: Initiating, Planning and Coordinating a Program, Identifying and Reducing Danger Factors, Recreation and Group Work, and Discovery and Referral of Problem Cases; Apprehension of Offenders. In the other three areas the program was shown to be at the "Promising" level. These areas were Educational Standards and Practices, Social Treatment and Readjustment, and Detention and Adjudication. After an analysis of the findings of this study the following recommendations were made: (1) that research concerning the youth of DeKalb and their problems be undertaken, (2) that some kind of evaluation system be designed and implemented, (3) the formation of a board with representatives from each agency to coordinate all programs and activities, (4) to develop better communications with the police department, ($) a more complete analysis and employment of the recreational facilities available, (6) a broader and more complete public education program, (7) involvement of the local churches and religious leaders in the Municipal Youth Counselor Program, (&) the integration of adolescents into all phases of the program, (9) to open the lines of communication with the state and regional programs, (10) an investigation into the possible opportunities and programs that could be developed with Northern Illinois University.


Includes bibliographical references.


131 pages




Northern Illinois University

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