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The billion dollar costs of troubled youth: prospects for cost-effective prevention and treatment

The billion dollar costs of troubled youth: prospects for cost-effective prevention and treatment
The billion dollar costs of troubled youth: prospects for cost-effective prevention and treatment
Reports a follow-up study of 227 youth excluded from school and transferred into School Exclusion Units (SEUs). Information on criminal convictions following discharge from the SEUs was gathered from a review of police files, with a cross-check to the national criminal records database. Results indicate that 63% had criminal convictions after leaving formal schooling, at age 16. 30% had been convicted of "violence against the person," and 31% had served or were serving prison terms. 26% had been convicted of 10 or more crimes. The costs of servicing this cohort since the age of 12 (including child care and school exclusion costs) were at the very minimum US$45,472 per individual. Generalizing these figures to the national estimates of at least 15,000 youth formally excluded from school in England and Wales, and transferred to SEUs, indicates a cost to the public purse of at least US$682 millions by the time these youth are 19.5 yrs old. Lifetime costs are likely to be much higher, amounting to several billion dollars. It is argued that spending a fraction of this money on preventive and supportive social and educational services in the school years would be highly cost effective. Research into why some individuals do not enter the cycle of criminality is suggested.
0267-3843
211-225
Bagley, C.
e39bd113-ad87-4097-a87f-4fbc97683b6e
Pritchard, C.
b70dbf5c-77c7-4920-9385-32de05d09f77
Bagley, C.
e39bd113-ad87-4097-a87f-4fbc97683b6e
Pritchard, C.
b70dbf5c-77c7-4920-9385-32de05d09f77

Bagley, C. and Pritchard, C. (1998) The billion dollar costs of troubled youth: prospects for cost-effective prevention and treatment. International Journal of Adolescence and Youth, 7 (3), 211-225.

Record type: Article

Abstract

Reports a follow-up study of 227 youth excluded from school and transferred into School Exclusion Units (SEUs). Information on criminal convictions following discharge from the SEUs was gathered from a review of police files, with a cross-check to the national criminal records database. Results indicate that 63% had criminal convictions after leaving formal schooling, at age 16. 30% had been convicted of "violence against the person," and 31% had served or were serving prison terms. 26% had been convicted of 10 or more crimes. The costs of servicing this cohort since the age of 12 (including child care and school exclusion costs) were at the very minimum US$45,472 per individual. Generalizing these figures to the national estimates of at least 15,000 youth formally excluded from school in England and Wales, and transferred to SEUs, indicates a cost to the public purse of at least US$682 millions by the time these youth are 19.5 yrs old. Lifetime costs are likely to be much higher, amounting to several billion dollars. It is argued that spending a fraction of this money on preventive and supportive social and educational services in the school years would be highly cost effective. Research into why some individuals do not enter the cycle of criminality is suggested.

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Published date: 1998

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 33703
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/33703
ISSN: 0267-3843
PURE UUID: d4880b57-d7d1-4cfb-9203-918d04624190

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Date deposited: 09 Jan 2008
Last modified: 17 May 2019 16:31

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