San Francisco’s Juvenile Probation Department runs two facilities where juvenile offenders can live in a more structured and controlled environment: juvenile hall at the Youth Guidance Center and the Log Cabin Ranch School.
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Juvenile probation officers enter the scene before and after young offenders are sentenced to serve time at one of these facilities, or youths may be assigned to a probation officer in lieu of a facility sentence. Officers conduct pre-trial investigations, develop rehabilitation plans, and ensure young offenders are living up to their terms of probation. At any given time there are about 800 youths assigned to the Juvenile Probation Department, and overall about 90 percent of them will manage to pull their lives together and stay straight thanks in large part to the assistance provided by juvenile probation officers.
Educational Qualifications for Careers in Juvenile Probation
Candidates interested in finding how to become juvenile probation officers in San Francisco should be aware of a few minimum requirements for the position. Candidates need to have the right combination of training, education, and experience to be qualified to perform the duties of a juvenile probation officer.
As stipulated by the Juvenile Probation Department, candidates must have a bachelor’s degree with major coursework in the behavioral and social sciences, or a degree in another closely area of study.
The City and County of San Francisco will consider other experience and education qualifiers on a case-by-case basis.
San Francisco’s Juvenile Probation Officer Training
New officers are required to complete an intensive probations training course totaling 200 hours during their first year of employment. This includes all the critical information and skills needed in order for officers to enter their new careers acting as professional public servants of the City and County of San Francisco. Training includes:
- Juvenile justice and detention
- Ethics, legality, and roles of the juvenile probation officer
- Indications of gang affiliation or membership
- Family violence and psychological problems
- Substance abuse
- Juvenile court report writing
- Surveillance, arrest, and restraining techniques
Applying for Juvenile Probation Officer Jobs in San Francisco
Candidates can submit an online application by searching for available Deputy Probation Officer jobs on the human resources employment announcement webpage. If there are no current vacancies candidates can request to be notified via email as soon as there is an opening. The application is the same for adult and juvenile probation officers, a differentiation that will be made after candidates have completed the hiring and training processes. A candidate’s application will be reviewed and if the candidate meets the minimum requirements and the application is complete, he or she may be eligible to continue in the application process which includes:
- Civil service examination over basic knowledge including reading comprehension and grammar
- Background investigation
- Drug screening
- Polygraph exam
- Medical and psychological evaluation
The recent starting salary for a juvenile probation officer working in San Francisco was between $56,820 and $92,170 depending on experience and qualifications.