Schools and Delinquency

Gary D. Gottfredson

in The Oxford Handbook of Juvenile Crime and Juvenile Justice

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780195385106
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Schools and Delinquency

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  • Criminology and Criminal Justice
  • Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice


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This article examines the nature of delinquent and related problem behavior in schools. It suggests that public perceptions that the quality of many urban schools is low has the effect of exacerbating the concentration of populations of young people at elevated risk of both delinquent behavior and poor educational outcomes in some communities. It describes delinquency and related problem behaviors in schools and suggests that delinquents and dropouts are engaged in a variety of problem behaviors, and they are low achieving, poorly motivated, and uncommitted to school. It also discusses whether individual characteristics predispose young people to problem behavior and poor school achievement. Furthermore, the chapter reveals the implications of school demography for delinquency and educational outcomes. Finally, it presents an argument concerning whether or not schools should be concerned with preventing delinquency.

Keywords: problem behavior; delinquent behavior; school achievement; educational outcomes

Article.  9713 words. 

Subjects: Criminology and Criminal Justice ; Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice

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