Juvenile Correctional Officer I/II/III/IV


The Juvenile Correctional Officer (JCO) I/II/III/IV is responsible for direct care of juveniles in a correctional setting. The JCO is subject to work overtime and be on call. This is a career ladder series, see the JCO Pay Program information.


  • Serves as a youth supervisor with responsibility for the safety, personal conduct, care, and rehabilitation of the youth.
  • Assumes responsibility for the custody and care of youth through knowledge of and adherence to laws, rules, regulations, policies and standard operating procedures governing the Texas Juvenile Justice Department.
  • Searches for contraband and provides security; counts, feeds, and supervises assigned youth in dormitories, classroom areas, and other areas; and performs security of various assigned areas.
  • Provides custody and security of assigned youth including constantly observing actions of youth for prolonged periods.
  • Performs "pat" and "strip" searches of youth.
  • Physically restrains and secures sometimes assaultive youth.
  • Transfers and transports youth, on foot and in vehicles and other forms of transportation.
  • Reviews, and properly applies information found in youth records that is related to the youth’s health and safety and to the security of the facility; provides appropriate information to other staff; complies with policies, procedures, rules, and regulations; and prepares and maintains records, forms, and reports.
  • Receives competency-based introductory training in various methodologies used in the residential and community service treatment programs.
  • Provides youth supervision and implements group and individual treatment plans.
  • Maintains security in buildings, grounds, and other posts; intervenes during emergencies or altercations to prevent escapes and gain physical control of youth.
  • Supervises movement of youth inside and outside the facility, and takes periodic counts of youth.
  • Supervises youth in a correctional facility in the performance of work activities and during recreational and religious activities, and conducts inspections for health and safety hazards.
  • Interacts critically and constructively with other staff members to develop and implement successful treatment techniques.
  • Develops effective, professional relationships with youth, co-workers, and treatment team members.
  • Assists youth with their personal issues and refers issues to the group in accordance with the principles of the program.
  • Observes and keeps staff informed daily of significant behavioral conditions known about an individual and/or the group.
  • Provides services to potentially aggressive/combative youth in a correctional setting with a wide variety of temperaments (volatile, mentally ill, suicidal) and specialized needs (chemically dependent, sexual offenders, emotionally disturbed, etc.).
  • Learns, understands and demonstrates good judgment following TJJD policies, rules, and procedures.
  • Works under hazardous, stressful conditions, with possible occurrences of extreme heightened stress.
  • Maintains accurate records and files.
  • Performs other related work as assigned.


The following physical & mental characteristics are representative of those deemed necessary for an employee to successfully perform the various duties of this job. Reasonable accommodations will be made as needed to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential job functions.

  • Analyzing
  • Ability to communicate effectively, orally and in Writing
  • Ability to see
  • Ability to hear (with or without aid)
  • Ability to feel
  • Prolonged standing and walking
  • Heavy lifting, 45 lbs. & over
  • Climbing ladders
  • Heavy carrying, 45 lbs. & over
  • Pulling
  • Repeated bending
  • Operate motor equipment
  • Reaching above shoulder
  • Grasping
  • Identify colors
  • Walking
  • Standing
  • Depth perception
  • Sitting
  • Crawling 
  • Twisting
  • Kneeling
  • Pushing
  • Stooping
  • Climbing stairs
  • Restraining combative youth


  1. Ability to work with youth in an empathetic and understanding manner.
  2. Ability to foster the cooperation of the youth in the treatment process.
  3. Ability to communicate effectively with youth and to explain the progress of the youth to their family members and other treatment staff.
  4. Ability to remain alert, observant, and physically able to respond appropriately to work situations or emergencies including, but not limited to, physical restraint of youth.
  5. Ability to intervene and correct behavior and facilitate group discussions and activities.
  6. Ability to learn verbal and physical crisis intervention/de-escalation techniques and emergency treatment procedures.
  7. Ability to accept and adapt to changes in assignments, methods, policies, etc.
  8. Ability to physically restrain youth when necessary in a manner consistent with instructions received in training. 
  9. Ability to appropriately respond to abusive language and conduct in a manner consistent with instructions received in training. 
  10. Introductory knowledge of individual and group behavior.
  11. Introductory knowledge of child development and the role of the family.
  12. Introductory knowledge of the causes of juvenile delinquency and current methods of juvenile offender treatment.
  13. Introductory knowledge of the general techniques of communicating with and counseling adolescents.
  14. Ability to transport youth and travel as necessary.
  15. Ability to work a variety of shifts, weekends, holidays, and overtime when required.
  16. Must possess and maintain a valid Class C and/or Commercial Drivers License, with an acceptable driving record and criminal records check.



Must be at least 21 years of age. Must have graduated from an accredited high school or earned a certified GED. Some experience working with juvenile delinquents, including youth who are emotionally/behaviorally at risk, or experience in an adult or juvenile correctional, mental health, or detention program is helpful.

Applicants with the following will not be considered:

  • Felony conviction of any kind.
  • Class A or B misdemeanor conviction within the past five (5) years.
  • Conviction of a crime (Felony, Class A or B misdemeanor) involving a juvenile victim or direct endangerment of a juvenile.
  • On probation or parole for any criminal offense, or have criminal charges pending, or have an outstanding warrant.

Pre-employment conditions:

This position requires acceptable results from mandatory:

  • pre-employment drug test;
  • finger printing, criminal records check, and driving record check;
  • Fitness-for-Duty Assessment to determine the applicant’s suitability; and
  • physical exam.

Continued employment is contingent upon the following:

Must pass and maintain TJJD’s Pre-Service (Sole Supervision) course, which requires physical restraint of juveniles. Ability to restrain aggressive, out of control, or violent juveniles.