As a volunteer in L.A. County's juvenile detention system, I agree with probation officer Kurt Keller: Canceling the sports program at Camp Kilpatrick is a "heartbreaker." Kids desperately need to be taught how to perform in real-life situations.
If there is no issue with money, as the county says, then what could possibly be the reason for abandoning a program that is a proven success? Did theU.S. Department of Justice, which is monitoring the county's juvenile corrections system, specifically rule out sports?
The Department of Justice believes that, based on studies, the best way to spend $41 million to reduce recidivism is to rebuild Kilpatrick without its sports program. However, I don't think living in brand new cottages will matter if the teens don't learn the real-life lessons that competing fairly in sports offers. Kilpatrick's wards may end up back in those cottages very soon.