School and Prison Reform
School and Prison Reform
Presentation of Evidence
1. Our first United States Supreme Court Chief Justice John Jay, writing in Georgia v. Brailsford, 1794, concluded, "The Jury has the right to judge both the law as well as the facts in controversy.
2. Robert J. Andrzejewski, Ed.D., Superintendent of the Red Clay Consolidated School District, wrote to State Representative Roger Roy on August 1, 2003, "The Courts have, on the whole, been ineffective in dealing with Truancy." "What more can school personnel do if the students still do not come to school?" Federal legislation for No Child Left Behind makes the truancy problem even more critical.
I claim the need for a separate Truant School.
3. Ms. Janet Urdahl, MSW, CADC, Truancy Court Coordinator and statistician for the State schools at Justice of the Peace Court 7 in Dover, reports that early intervention at ages 10 and 11 results in 99% compliance with school attendance. By age 12 compliance drops to 74%, and by age 14 it is only 23%. (No action is taken at age 15 because the administrative detail lasts a year, and the youth can quit at age 16.) Early intervention is critical.
I claim the need for State intervention by age 10 (5th Grade).
4. Chief Magistrate Patricia W. Griffin writes, "The 951 cases filed in Truancy Court in the 2003 school year resulted in an astonishing 5114 case events (filings, arraignments, case reviews and dispositions)".
I claim that education delayed is education denied.
5. I am a concerned Taxpayer for the local school district. I claim injury in that my taxes are not used to teach our laws and customs to every Youth of school age, and that more than half of our incarcerated Felons are school dropouts---requiring additional taxation.
The Defiant Youth is less than 3% of the Student Population, yet he quickly encourages another 12% to follow in his misbehavior. Once the Defiant Youth is removed to a study cell, the 12% will immediately return to acceptable behavior.
I must pay all of my taxes; the State must teach all of the Youth.
6. I offer the attached Suspension data for the Middle Schools of H.B.DuPont, Stanton, Skyline, and A.I.DuPont for the school years 2001 and 2002.
Students Suspended '01 Suspended '02 Suspended '09
H.B.DuPont 870 182 188 220
Stanton 667 180 279 210
Skyline 700 121 152 194
A.I.DuPont 630 223 226 175*

* # Students: 462
The problem is increasing, and these are our better schools!
Presentation of Remedy
1. This scale model of 3 arrangements of the Study Cell, for sleeping, for exercise, and
for study, shows the washbasin/toilet, fold down cot and sleeping bag, fold down desk and chair, and the most important TV/VCR and videoCamera (for self-motivation
and self-instruction). The Defiant Youth will choose when to sleep, eat, study, wash, etc.
The Attendant will provide the daily food ration, laundry and workbooks.
2. With the Court's permission, I will show the Jury a 2 minute tape of actual self-talk, and a 2 minute tape of Dealing with Rejection, from the 11 minute Job Search tape. This is to demonstrate learning useful skills from videotape, and learning to encourage myself.
Alcoholics Anonymous encourages loving confrontation to minimize enabling, and to expose reality. Conversation with self on the videocamera opens the same opportunity.
3. The Study Cell will contain and control the Defiant Youth 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, until he satisfies the Court-ordered courses and counseling (on videotape), AND, until he writes an acceptable thesis teaching US how to deal with truancy. He will probably complete these requirements in less than 6 weeks.
The proposed paint ball tranquilizer for discipline is more appropriate than a vengeful beating with a billy club, and much less brutal than the shotgun or the Officer's 9mm automatic pistol.
4. If required, I will subpoena the following witnesses for testimony:
Commissioner of Prisons Stanley Taylor - to describe the many successful courses, classes and programs for Inmates. I want this information available to EVERY convicted felon.
Coordinator of Distance Learning at DTCC Robert Bowen - to show success with video self-training.
and, those quoted in the Presentation of Evidence. All are on State salary.
Jury Verdicts Requested
I ask the Jury to consider and decide each of these counts:
1. The Attorney General ignores excessive school absences and truancy, when absolute (no excuses) attendance data, and class size by head count can be readily taken and recorded in a data base. The Attorney General's Staff can then respond to worst cases first.
Please bring in a guilty verdict and decide: Do It!
2. The Attorney General tolerates Suspension when video self-training courses are available.
Please bring in a guilty verdict and decide: Do It!
3. The Attorney General allows walk-aways when fencing is available to insure compliance.
Please bring in a guilty verdict and decide: Do It!
4. The Attorney General ignores low motivation in the Defiant Youth, when videos of
work opportunities in trades and professions are available.
Please bring in a guilty verdict and decide: Do It!
5. The Attorney General tolerates free roaming of truants in the Community when wristband monitors are available.
Please bring in a guilty verdict and decide: Do It!
1. I ask the Court for Compensatory Damages sufficient to justify a hearing in Superior
2. For Punitive Damages, I ask the Jury to decide in favor of constructing a Study Cell
demonstration facility on the vacant property behind Gander Hill for 1000 Defiant
Youths, at a cost not to exceed $8,000,000 and completed for use by 2006..
Assigned Advisors
1. Please assign the News Journal Editor, John H. Taylor Jr. as Patron of Justice, to inform the Community of prison progress on a daily basis. This will insure diligence, and therefore confidence and optimism.
2. Request that Professors from Delaware State University, the University of Delaware and Delaware Technical and Community Colleges participate in advising on nutrition, counseling, Architect drawings, video courses,etc.
Professors of Criminal Justice will be responsible for evaluating the youth's Truancy Thesis for new and useful information to be arranged in a computer Expert System. This will assist Truant Officers and School Principals in minimizing the problems of truancy.
3. Encourage the Polaroid Corporation to assemble a camera to photograph the pupil of the eye in response to light. This personal inexpensive analysis will inform me of my normal self, which can be compared to my reaction rate when I may be impaired by medications, drugs, alcohol or fatigue.
Facility Description
The Study Cell structure is a box-like 4 story building, approximately 260' x 85' x 40'
high, divided into 16 sections, each with separate HVAC and sewer lines, for men, women, boys, girls, non-violents, and violents.
A unit at the side of the building will provide for video monitoring, Attendants' lockers and
break room, Washer/Dryers, and Supply Storage (books, clothing, food rations, soap, etc.).
Budgeting (approx. $4000/yr/youth)
Facility mortgage: 30% Staffing: 40% Maintenance: 15% Personals: 15%
DSU, UD and DTCC Professors are supported by our State Budget, as is the Student Public School Allowance. There is NO NEED FOR ANY NEW MONIES!
For security, progress and optimism, we owe it to ourselves and to our children that each is properly trained and educated, since Justice means bringing to light information that may affect the innocent.


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© Leonard Beck