The Reentry System and Parole Operations play a significant role in TJJD's correctional treatment program and continuum of care. The program is designed to:
- Advance public safety through rehabilitation;
- Build trust with youth on parole and work to intrinsically motivate youth to make positive change;
- Provide after-care and reentry planning that begins early to better ensure successful transition back to the community;
- Provide supports, supervision and resources to youth on parole in the community through contracted and state-operated parole services;
- Deliver individualized supports and services to address the youth’s needs in a community setting;
- Establish and oversee program goals and objectives relating to an innovative, multifaceted and integrated reentry system;
- Coordinate the work of multiple divisions and external organizations involved in reentry functions to ensure seamless and successful transition for youth;
- Become an integrated part of a fully Trauma- Informed System;
- Track and analyze performance measures related to positive youth outcomes.
We believe that youth benefit from The Texas Model’s foundation of trust, self-regulation, and felt safety while in placement. Once on parole, they continue to rely on trusting adults for guidance, which is also a key ingredient in the foundation of The University of Cincinnati’s evidenced-based Effective Practices in Community Supervision © delivered by their parole officer.
In 2019, the Texas Juvenile Justice Department Parole Division implemented Effective Practices in Community Supervision (EPICS) to enhance current parole efforts. The EPICS model ensures that parole officers first build trust, focus on treating the criminogenic needs of youth, and use treatment strategies that match the learning styles and motivations of young people. Additionally, the EPICS model ensures that officers are trained on skills that are designed to increase the therapeutic potential of a correctional program, including modeling, effective reinforcement, effective disapproval, effective use of authority, structured learning, problem solving, cognitive restructuring, and the development of relationship skills.
Most youth initially placed on parole are assigned to the intensive level of community supervision. Youth who have earned parole credit in other programs can be assigned to a moderate or minimum level of community supervision. The parole officer meets face-to-face with the youth to:
- Check in on the youth's overall progress while on parole;
- Review previous evidenced based interventions and homework;
- Deliver an intervention, role play and model designed to address a criminogenic need;
- Assign homework for practice and to motivate positive behavior change.
- Assist the youth in reintegration into the community through the implementation of the parole success plan.
While on parole, the level of supervision is reduced based on a youth’s risk to reoffend and demonstrated compliance with their individualized case plan. Youth on parole have regularly scheduled office appointments with a parole officer, plus unscheduled visits by parole staff to schools, work sites, and homes.