This learning journey has enabled me as a practitioner to develop the necessary expertise and also to effectively implement strategies and interventions which lead to the two primary functions of supporting young people who need to re-adjust to lead non criminal lives. This expertise includes applying a variety of strategies and approaches that I have attained as a practitioner in the course of my studies.
The knowledge and expertise that one gains from the course is not, however, focused merely on dealing with young offenders but also includes developing my personal capacity to ensure a reflective approach to my work. The youth justice practitioner is trained to develop a discerning and critical attitude towards their area of expertise as well as ensure that the same is fundamentally ethical, sound and based on correct and accurate knowledge. This is achieved by gaining a thorough and extensive knowledge of the England and Wales youth justice system and the immediate application of this knowledge, not only to one’s work as a professional but also within the context of a multi-agency setting. The need to be reflective in our practice and critically analyse outcomes to influence future processes is I believe imperative in the ability to develop our own practice and the delivery of a continually improving service. It emphasizes the need to consciously structure reflection in areas where in the past we as practitioners have perhaps ‘naturally’ carried out our own analysis. The need to formalise this process has been amplified over the years.
The truth is that while the main purpose of the adult criminal justice system is to punish the criminal according to the level of his or crime, the aim of the juvenile justice system is to apply rehabilitation or mentoring to juvenile offenders in order to prevent further crimes and to change their delinquent