Juvenile probation is conducted by the Juvenile Branch of the Family Division within the Court of Common Pleas of the First Judicial District. Juvenile probation services are based on the Balanced & Restorative Justice Model, which emphasizes the interests of victims, delinquents and the community. The juvenile probation department is organized into seven geographic districts as well as supervision methods. These units include GPS & Voice Tracking Unit, Juvenile Enforcement Teams, and Special Offenders Units.
Requirements for Juvenile Probation Officers in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania
The juvenile probation officer jobs in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania receive starting salaries ranging from $39,324 up to $43,261 per year. Only candidates with the following qualifications are eligible for juvenile probation officer jobs in Philadelphia County:
- Must possess a bachelor’s degree
- Must be or become a county resident within six months
- Must have a valid Pennsylvania driver’s license
- Must obtain certification from the County Probation and Parole Officers’ Firearms Education and Training Commission
- Must be willing to perform duties on night shifts, weekends or holidays
The required skills essential to becoming a juvenile probation officer in Philadelphia County include:
- Knowledge of social and behavioral science related to delinquent behavior
- Knowledge of community and social resources
- Ability to establish and nurture relationships with agency, community and treatment personnel
- Success in managing anti-social or maladjusted individuals
- Ability to communicate effectively in writing or orally
- Write and present reports
- Manage a large number of diverse cases
- File and manage documents in the legal or information systems
- Investigate possible probation violations
The County Probation and Parole Officers’ Firearms Education and Training Commission provides a number of training programs that include instruction in
- Officers’ authority
- Firearm safety
- Jurisdiction and use of force
- Shooting fundamentals
The entire program is 49 hours in length but includes 31 hours of instruction in hands on skills.
Upon completion of the basic training program, new juvenile probation officers are mandated to remain under the supervision of senior officers for the initial 12 months. Following the first year, juvenile probation officers must complete at least 40 hours of training each year.
Philadelphia County Addresses Needs of Juvenile Offenders
Philadelphia has come under close scrutiny in recent years as several patterns in juvenile delinquency have emerged. The leading factors contributing to an escalating juvenile delinquency problem are rooted in endemic poverty and violence, as well as an epidemic of school dropouts. Almost 47 percent of African American and Hispanic children under 17 years of age live in poverty in Philadelphia. This county also has one of the highest dropout rates in the country, with only 40 to 50 of students graduating high school.
In response to the growing tide of juvenile offenders, Philadelphia has introduced the Blueprints for Violence Prevention programs. These programs include residential or group therapies for chronic delinquency. Multi-systemic therapy is a family based treatment that identifies and remedies issues contributing to antisocial behaviors. The Functional Family Therapy is a program which modifies behaviors within a family context.