Sacramento County Superintendent of Schools David W. Gordon joined Sacramento County District Attorney Jan Scully today to announce a new Youth Academy program for high school students.
The District Attorney's Office is partnering with the Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) and the Sacramento City Unified School District to launch a pilot summer school course at McClatchy High School. Open to students from across the district, the first Youth Academy class begins June 23, ending July 11.
"We believe the Youth Academy will not only to build bridges with youth but inspire future law enforcement leaders and deter others from being on the wrong side of the criminal justice system," said District Attorney Jan Scully.
Derived from the District Attorney's Citizens Academy for adult community members, the Youth Academy will provide high school students with an overview of the criminal justice system including the roles, responsibilities, and challenges of law enforcement, district attorney, and judiciary. The program will also address important and sensitive topics involving diversity and race issues within the framework of the criminal justice system.
The objective of the Youth Academy is to engage youth in communication and participation with representatives from the criminal justice system to increase understanding, improve relations, and deter criminal activity among at-risk students.
"I would also like to commend the District Attorney's Office for providing students with a positive exposure to our criminal justice system, and the roles of the District Attorney, law enforcement, and the judicial system," Superintendent Gordon said. "These classes will no doubt have an impact on the lives of students, especially those who desperately need positive influences and role models in their lives."
Over the past several years, the Sacramento County Board of Education has adopted an impressive list of challenging courses provided through Regional Occupational Programs (ROP). These are courses that are challenging, relevant, and interesting to students. ROP classes available to local high school students include Environmental Studies of California's Watershed, Early Childhood Development/Careers, and Introduction to Forensic Sciences. Students also have access to other career-oriented courses, including Business Law, Careers in Education Biotechnology, and Multi-media Sound Engineering.
Youth Academy, students will learn from in-class speakers representing various public safety departments and agencies as well from experiencing real-life lessons through three scheduled field trips to sites including the District Attorney's Office and the Sacramento Superior Courthouse.