Research shows that kids exposed to legal education are less likely to break the law. FLY’s innovative law programs teach juvenile justice and at-risk youth about the law and consequences of crime. Our nationally recognized law curriculum uses role-play, debates, and mock city council hearings to capture youth interest and then build skills in anger management, problem solving, empathy, and resisting negative peer pressure.
Who Does the Law Program Serve?
FLY’s Law Program serves youth ages 15-17 who are on probation, at-risk of probation, or incarcerated. During the 12-week legal education course, youth meet once a week for 2 hours. (Sample of curriculum topics)
How Do Youth Get Into the Law Program?
Youth are referred into the Law Program by probation officers, judges, public defenders, and school officials.
How Do I Refer a Youth into the Law Program?
You can refer a youth to the Law Program by printing, completing and faxing this form to FLY.
What Does the Law Program Teach?
Youth in our law Program are provided with practical information about laws relevant to their lives and an opportunity to bond with caring adults. With evidence-based practices, our safe, fun, and interactive environment cultivates assets essential for self-sufficiency and healthy functioning. The course covers topics such as theft, vandalism, unlawful sex, hate crimes, drugs and alcohol, Proposition 21, and gangs.
Mid-way through the Program youth participate in a college campus tour, where with the help of FLY’s system partners (judges, district attorneys, public defenders, etc.) youth do a mock trial. At the end of the 12-weeks, FLY sponsors a completion ceremony to celebrate the contributions and strengths of each youth in our program.
What Are the Goals of the Law Program?
The goal of the Law Program is to inspire our youth to change their behavior, and build their skills and confidence to make change possible. In the Program youth participate in group activities such as role-plays, debates, mock trials, and city council hearings. These activities foster pro-social behaviors and build skills such as empathy, non-violent conflict resolution, drug refusal skills, problem solving, and positive leadership. Guests, such as lawyers, judges, police officers, and probation officers, attend various sessions to share their thoughts and experiences.
What is the Law Program’s Impact?
After completing the Law Program youth consistently report the program had a positive impact. For example:
- Over 80% of youth report that after FLY they are less likely to break the law, said by one youth: “FLY is a good program because it helps kids change their behavior, their attitudes, and their actions.”
- Over 85% say that knowing about the law gives them more confidence to resist negative peer pressure. “Now when some friends ask me to hang out I say no because I know they are going to do stuff that’s illegal.”
- Over 70% state that after joining FLY they started doing better in school and over 90% report that FLY gave them access to positive role models.
Who Helps Our Youth?
Volunteers, many of whom are law students, complete a rigorous application process and thirty-hour training program. They are assigned to two-to-four person teams to teach at one of our many sites. Throughout the course, the Program staff work closely with the youth and their families, as well as referring sources, to connect youth with additional services to promote their development and reduce juvenile crime.
Where Do We Teach Our Law Program?
Classes are offered in juvenile halls, ranches, and camps (for youth serving 20 day to 12 months of incarceration), community centers, and alternative/community schools.
What Happens to Youth After the Law Program?
A number of youth who complete the Law Program want and need to transform their lives, but do not have the support necessary to be successful. For these youth, FLY offers the Leadership Training Program, which provides one-on-one case management support and leadership training for 12 to 24 months.