"Fixing the family" is the key element in reducing juvenile misbehavior.

ARK's Juvenile Justice Program (JJP) is employed by Truancy Courts, Youth Courts, and Justice of the Peace Courts that deal with juvenile misbehaviors. The process calls for thirteen- to nineteen-year-old teens--who are charged with Class C misdemeanors (truancy, fighting, curfew violations, etc.)—to be referred to ARK's Juvenile Justice program. It is a family-oriented program that involves both teens and parents simultaneously. Parents participate in the ARK for Parents (and Caregivers) while the teens are engaged in ARK for Teens.

Judges may refer families to ARK's Juvenile Justice Program in lieu of fining the teens for their misbehavior, and, once the teens and their parent(s) have completed the Program, the charges against the teens are dismissed. Meeting once a week for one hour, the program lasts for eleven weeks.

ARK for Parents (and Caregivers) gives adults tools for conveying the unconditional love that conveys high self-esteem and a positive self-concept. ARK for Teens provides the teenagers a forum for talking about subjects that are of interest to them (drugs, bully-proofing, sex, anger management, etc.) and for learning communication skills that will enable them to have better relationships with their parents and peers.

Parents and their teens are encouraged to talk together after the meeting about trust, respect, natural and logical consequences, family meetings, and unconditional love. The family dynamic changes, and the teens' behavior improves.

If you would like more information about ARK in the juvenile justice system, contact us at 888-ARK-8922 (888-275-0744), or email the ARK Group. You can also order ARK for Parents (and Caregivers) and ARK for Teens through our online store.

Frequently asked questions

How does ARK's Juvenile Justice process work?

Judges refer juveniles and their parent(s) (or caretakers) to ARK in lieu of paying a fine or doing community service for the youth's misbehavior. The teens and the parents participate in the program. Arriving together, parents engage in ARK for Parents (and Caregivers) and kids in ARK for Teens. After the meetings, they discuss issues and engage in the sort of communication that builds healthy families.

How effective is ARK's Juvenile Justice Program?

One of the juvenile courts in Houston has the largest juvenile dockets in the state of Texas—6,000 Class C misdemeanor cases a year. The judge of this court employs ARK's Juvenile Justice Program for around 1,000 of those cases annually. A study of the court revealed that, in a recent year, recidivism among the general youth offender population was 35-40% within one year. If teens and their parents took the ARK course together, recidivism was only 5.6%.

Can I access a study on ARK's Juvenile Justice Program?

See "Research Conducted on the ARK Program's Impact on Juvenile Recidivism."

How can I find out more about ARK's Juvenile Justice Program?

If you work in the juvenile justice system and would like to learn how ARK can help, please contact us at 888-ARK-8922 (888-275-0744), or email the ARK Group. You can also order ARK for Parents and ARK for Teens through our online store.