From School Library Journal
Grade 6 Up. These series titles present fairly up-to-date statistical (1990-94) and anecdotal evidence of two multifaceted and related problems. The authors believe that the causes of dangerous schools and teen crime lie in our turbulent society; they cite gangs, guns, drugs, violence and sex in the media, poverty, discrimination, unstable families, inappropriate role models, and the lack of parental supervision as explanations. Both titles stress that all socioeconomic and geographic regions of the country have been affected. Bosch concludes that children have become "harder" and desensitized to the pain they cause others. Schools deals at length with the presence of weapons. Safety hazards to students and teachers are also viewed in a broader context, including attention to environmental problems in "sick buildings," as well as criminal incidents. This book is somewhat repetitive and disjointed in style. In his last chapter, the author switches from addressing a general audience to a patronizing appeal to young people. It is doubtful that the section "Learn New Strategies to Deal with Conflict" will be of help to readers. Margolis traces the history and the workings of the juvenile justice system, referring to relevant Federal legislation and Supreme Court decisions. He asserts that there is pressure for stricter prosecution of offenders and their transfer to the jurisdiction of adult courts. Black-and-white illustrations and color covers add little to either title. Nonetheless, these books are acceptable additions.?Libby K. White, Schenectady County Public Library, NY
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
This thought-provoking book in the Issues in Focus series points out that juvenile crime has become a major American crisis: ``The number of juveniles arrested for homicide between 1983 and 1992 increased 128 percent, as opposed to the 9 percent increase among the adult population.'' Margolis explores the history of such crime in America, how the laws have changed over time, and how some communities are attempting to reduce crime and to rehabilitate juvenile delinquents. There is an interesting discussion as to whether youthful offenders should be tried as adults, with the right to a jury trial and the possibility of harsher punishment. Although the rise in teen crime correlates with the decline of the family, there are no easy solutions and Margolis never delves very deep; this is a cursory overview of a complex problem. (b&w photos, not seen, charts, notes, glossary, further reading, index) (Nonfiction. 11+) -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.