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properly adjust himself. The result is poor work, bad discipline, and lost opportunity for both the institution and the wards.
But what may an institution, even an old, badly planned, and poorly equipped institution, do for the unadjusted adolescent? Two things are required and are equally fundamental: First, there must be secured a careful and scientific job analysis of every assignment to work and training which the plant offers. This means that the psychologist must be a very important factor in making the analysis, for it is important that the minimum mental ability required to succeed at any given assignment be determined. Second, the most careful consideration must be given to the reception, study, and assignment of wards.
We may assume that our job is to start with the individual as we find him, and in the course of our studies we will secure and utilize all possible information which may have been gleaned by other agencies prior to the boy's coming to us. When the offender is received at the institution he should be delivered to an individual whose function it is to conduct an interview with as great a degree of comfortable informality as possible. The offender is not to be subjected to a third-degree examination for the purpose of securing his record, nor at this moment should there be any attempt made to take his record; moreover, the individual detailed to conduct the interview should be one whose whole duty in the institution frees him from the taint of disciplinary control. He is, in other words, to establish himself in the very first hour as a friendly adviser and counselor for the offender; his sole desire-he representing the viewpoint of the management-is to find out from the offender what his greatest difficulties probably are and what his best desires may lead to. There should be no misconception about this interview. It is not a question of five minutes or ten minutes; it is a question of establishing a relationship, and in doing this, time should not be a pressing factor. This interview must be free from every tinge of sentimentality. It should be an intensely practical interview, because the young offender comes into the situation with his mind quite firmly fixed on the subject of friends and enemies; he is not likely to regard this official as a friend; he is going to be very reserved and guarded, and will receive with a good deal of suspicion, possibly, any overtures which appear to him to be a veiled attempt to pry into his past or to bid for his confidence.
Following this interview the record clerk should be sent for, and the questions which it is necessary for the boy to answer personally to the record clerk should be given at this time, in the presence of the friendly adviser. I know that many of my colleagues will say this is sentimentality. I am so thoroughly familiar with the machinery of the prison and the reformatory that I know just what the record clerk looks like, and what the record clerk's office looks like, and the dead level of indifference that exists between the offender and the record clerk, separated by an iron wicket, and the offender standing beside a guard while the clerk, his eyes intent on the blank form before him, records the dis
agreeable facts required. This is strictly a police method of making a record. We must have this information, but we are not any longer interested in police methods with this boy; he has been through this before he came to us. Our major interest now must be to understand the boy. My reasons for wishing the record to be secured in the presence of the friendly counselor is that the boy shall not feel the arm of the law still stretching out in plans for recapture, identification, and that sort of thing, as is the case if the work is done in the record office. We want the friendly attitude established by the initial interview to carry over a little farther into the administrative field and thus help to establish in the mind of the boy, and in no mean degree in the mind of the record clerk, the importance of the human elements. The record clerk himself, in most institutions, needs a great deal of humanizing. He rarely regards his work as in any way connected with the offender. He has no vital interest except in statistics. The plan suggested will tend to put some humanity into the statistics; and when the record clerk, at any time after the initial entry is made, has occasion to go through the boy's record, he will have in his mind's eye a picture of the boy, the friendly counselor, and himself on the day the record was made. It may be argued that this is unimportant, because after all the record clerk merely keeps a record, does not enter into the training of the boy, does not direct any of his activities, nor come in contact with him: true, but he comes in contact with a great many officers, and if we can change by even a little the point of view of every officer in the place, the institution gradually grows out of its old prison shell toward its new conception of a true reformatory agency.
The next crucial step is quarantine. Just the term itself is unpleasant, and the conditions under which it is usually carried out are desolate and more or less forbidding. I know superintendents and wardens who are quite firm in their conviction that quarantine is a period during which the new arrival should be made to realize the rigors of discipline. The quarters for carrying out quarantine, as a rule, are isolated, as they should be. The furnishings are very meager, with practically no provisions for recreation, regular work, reading, or anything else except the application of the routine of the institution. By this practice the institution loses a golden opportunity. The group in quarantine is usually small. They have not yet been mingled with the general population; they have a great deal of prejudice and a great deal of misinformation. I would use the quarantine period in adjusting the individual to his new environment, in giving careful instruction in the rules and regulations, pointing out the necessities and advantages. Nothing can be made to pay the management greater dividends than the time of a wise adviser, probably the same one who conducted the first interview, with the quarantine group an hour or two morning and afternoon. I would have virtually a school of civics with the quarantine group, and in place of trying to impress the group with the rigidity of the discipline and the dire results which are sure to befall them for their failures or infractions, I would make a great effort to show them how they may live with the greatest degree of freedom and
the greatest assumption of individuality by understanding and obeying the rules. I would try to make them understand that the rules and regulations are not primarily for the purposes of punishment, but rather for the purposes of protection against punishment. I would try to make them understand the direct relation existing between the necessity for rules and regulations inside and for laws and ordinances outside; in fine, I would conduct a school in social ethics and civics.
But during all this period the boy should be having other experiences. There are all the routine examinations that the institution ought to give. The physician gives a thorough, painstaking examination-not the usual line examination which is concluded for each individual within the space of a few moments, where practically all of the blank spaces of the medical card are filled in with the word "negative," or "normal"; the physician must know that at the conclusion of his examination he is to make a recommendation to be used later in forming a program for the boy; that his professional knowledge and standing are at stake, and that he can't afford to be indifferent. The principal of the school will interview the offender; not only does he give the achievement tests, by which pretty accurate knowledge of his educational history is secured, but he visits at considerable length with the boy about his whole educational past; he learns a great deal about the home, the outside associations, the type of community, the spare-time activities and interests, and possibly a great deal about some special interests in the boy's life. The report of the school teacher is most important. The psychiatric and psychological examinations are of great value. Here, too, care must be taken to get at the individual. A psychological test, perfectly conducted from the scientific standpoint, may be practically useless if there is nothing put into the test except science. But if the examiner really knows something about the adolescent and can conduct the test in a manner to elicit interest and cooperation which results in the subject putting forth his best efforts, and will take time to give a sufficient number of different kinds of tests, the psychological work becomes most important. The real picture of the boy is found in the personality traits, reactions to various suggestions, the impression gained by the examiner from the boy's stories of his experiences; all these throw bright side lights on his character, temperament, and personality, and any amount of time necessary to secure this kind of information should be expended in the effort, because the only sensible object that we can possibly have in conducting any of these studies is to enable us better to understand the individual; the more time we take in trying to understand him in the beginning, the less time we shall lose by solitary confinement, loss of privileges, and other disciplinary measures later. Then comes the matter of the social history, all we can possibly gather concerning heredity and environment, record on probation, if any, the court record, and many other things. All of these examinations and inquiries will be going forward simultaneously, and at the end of three or four weeks we shall be in possession of a body of information accompanied by well
thought out recommendations from a group of people all seriously concerned with offering the best possible program to the boy.
This brings us down to the subject of classification. I could spend a great deal of time talking to you about classification, but I am not going to. I am going to let the term define itself in your minds. What I have already given is the main part of classification; it is the preparation. Classification is simply an administrative device to carry into action the recommendations made by the people conducting the studies. This group of people collectively we call the classification committee. At a certain time of the week the group meets. Everybody is provided with complete summaries of all examinations made upon the boy. Everybody's recommendations about the boy accompany the summary. Recommendations often conflict, but here is the opportunity for the group, face to face, to reconsider, talk it out, and decide upon the best possible program for the offender. This step is no more important than the next one, which requires that the boy himself shall appear before the committee. This must be very informal. It is not to be regarded, either by the committee or by the boy, as an inquiry; rather is the boy made to feel, through the informality and the kindly interest, that this group of people, all of whom he has met before, are sincerely interested in doing the very greatest service for him; so the plan is talked over with him so far as it is considered wise and prudent; and again, so far as it is considered wise and practicable, the boy's wishes concerning school and trade training are carried out. The particular officer whom it is thought by temperament, patience, good judgment, and tact is probably best suited to develop this particular individual is selected, and the boy is moved from quarantine into his regular assignment in the institution. One of the most important steps now in the whole process remains to be taken. It is to set a date for the reclassification of this boy. The job is only half done. Since all of the people concerned in the classification are human, probably everyone has some degree of error in fact or judgment in his reports and recommendations for the boy. After the boy has worked out on his assignment for a period of time, varying all the way from a week or two to a month or two, he is called before the committee, each examiner in the meantime having had a new interview with the boy, bringing his impressions and judgment down to date. And this process goes on just as long and as often as seems desirable or necessary in order to aid the boy in making the most complete adjustment possible.
But important as is the individual study and classification, it becomes a waste of time and effort unless the administration of the institution is carried out with sufficient skill to allow each boy's program to function effectively. The maladjustment by unwise or thoughtlessly made assignments is responsible for most of the discipline problems arising. The adolescent delinquent represents a highly specialized type of difficulty. Coupled with the question of his mental deviation we have a highly developed, antisocial, gang spirit, fed upon the adoration of the members of the gang; there is almost a complete absence of self-con
trol when selfish desire or opportunity to show off present themselves; the attitude toward work is one of scorn; the attitude toward authority is one of contempt, insolence, and defiance; the attitude toward the finer and better things of life is one of indifference. As a type, the adolescent delinquent is turbulent, often petulant, daring, defiant, but possessed of a superabundance of energy which has found outlet through lawless and undesirable channels, and which meets any attempt at repression with a spirit of rebellion and stubbornness. Therefore the question of discipline and the combination of discipline and work become very difficult and very technical, and yet this grave responsibility is distributed among scores of officials and instructors, each one necessarily being given a great degree of freedom for the exercise of the powers vested in him.
An institution population must be under constant and almost perfect control. Concerning this point there can be no argument. The argument starts when we attempt to define what we mean by perfect control. To some minds perfect control is perfect military discipline; anything less is bad discipline. Everything must move with precision, and everything must move in exact routine. The slightest break in the precision of the routine results in an upset in the institution. Under this kind of management, the classification plan is of little use, because the system can make no allowance for maladjustment. If the boy for any reason fails to turn out the right kind or the required amount of work he is punished. His inability to do the work well or to control himself is not recognized by the officer. Usually every failure on the part of the offender is regarded as wilful and as having been committed with deliberate motive; in other words, neither the system nor the officer can make any allowance for the adjustment of the population; the system is a fixed quantity, and every individual must conform to it. This type of institution management and discipline ruins the chances of the majority.
Another type of management will say that the more nearly naturally the population acts the better, as long as such action is entirely free from any traces of rowdyism, and will instantly respond to signals. They do not want a rigid military line of march. They want a natural, orderly line of march. They do not want a silent dining-room. They want a natural, busy atmosphere, but must be able to secure silence on a given signal. They do not want silent workshops, nor do they want malingering, excessive talking, or foolishness. They adopt for their standards a well-run business outside. It takes a vastly higher type of management to maintain this kind of discipline, but the number of individual adjustments secured is far greater.
The various examining services of the institution maintained for the study and assignment of the wards must be used constantly for the study of the disciplinary problems. The institution always has a considerable number of individuals who display stubbornness, indifference, carelessness, and other traits which are extremely annoying to the officer and tend to demoralize and lead astray other weak characters who need only a little leadership to become most