Opportunity Based Probation Evaluation

Recently, the National Research Council of the Committee on Law and Justice called for a translation of adolescent brain and developmental science into effective programs within the juvenile justice setting. In response to this call to praxis, Pierce County has partnered with the Annie E. Casey Foundation to develop and implement the Opportunity-Based Probation (OBP) program. OBP expands upon adolescent development research by leveraging adolescents’ drive towards independence and their heightened receptivity to rewards. In collaboration with probation officers, youth create meaningful goals and incentives that reward the development of prosocial behavior. Probation officers scaffold prosocial behavior by reinforcing success and constructively addressing probation violations and problem behaviors. Pierce County has partnered with the University of Washington’s Division of Public Behavioral Health and Justice Policy (PBHJP) to facilitate the implementation of OBP through a dual-phase design. This first phase is an “acceptability” pilot phase, where PBHJP will assess the preliminary effectiveness of OBP and provide improvement recommendations. The second phase is a stepped implementation phase over the course of 3 years where PBHJP will conduct an experimental outcomes analysis.

Download OBP presentation here