Youth Policing Project

Project Description/Goals (Closed in 2017)

The National Police Foundation, in collaboration with the California Police Chiefs Association and the California State Sheriffs’ Association, and with funding from the California Endowment, has produced a series of youth-focused policy briefs to enhance law enforcement knowledge and understanding of youth development in an effort to help improve outcomes for youth and public safety.

Line level personnel from both police and sheriff’s agencies more often than not, respond to sensitive situations, such as domestic family disputes, and in some jurisdictions are called on by the school to respond to incidents on campus. With the national debate surrounding the role of law enforcement in communities and more specifically in schools, it is important:

  • To provide law enforcement leaders and line level personnel with resources focused on helping to define the role of officers in communities and more specifically in schools;
  • To identify best practices for youth police engagement; and
  • To educate law enforcement about the science of youth development and working with young adults, with the overall goal of enhancing trust and cooperation between police, youth, and their families.



The four policy brief series is designed for California law enforcement executives but is applicable to law enforcement nationwide. Law enforcement executives from across the country can use these briefs to inform their strategies and to best define the role of their officers in schools and communities.

The first brief is an introduction that challenges law enforcement executives to develop a vision for positive police-youth interactions.


Funding & Collaboration

The youth-focused policy briefs have been produced in collaboration with the California Police Chiefs Association and the California State Sheriffs’ Association. This project is funded by The California Endowment (TCE).


Points of Contact

For more information on this project, please contact:

Blake Norton
Senior Vice President
(202) 833-1460

Jennifer Zeunik
Director of Programs
(202) 833-1460



Youth, youth policing, teen brain, school resource officers, California Endowment, youth development