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Ten-Year Follow-Up on the RCT Study of Mentoring in the Learning Environment (SMILE): Effects of the Communities in Schools Mentoring Program on Crime and Educational Persistence

NCJ Number
Date Published
April 2020
104 pages
This is the Final Technical Report on the methodology and findings of a longitudinal (10 years) evaluation of the effects of the San Antonio (Texas) Communities in Schools (CIS) mentoring program on the criminal behavior and educational persistence of the participants.
This study extends an evaluation called the Study of Mentoring in the Learning Environment (SMILE, Karcher, 2008), which was conducted between 2003-2007. The current study examined publicly available data on participants' criminal records and educational attainment 10 years later. In the original study, 516 students participated in the CIS-San Antonio program. In the current longitudinal study, data were obtained on adulthood criminal activity and educational attainment of 466 of the original 516 students. The study found that those who had enrolled in the CIS school-based mentoring program were half as likely to have been arrested for a misdemeanor and were 10 percent more likely to have pursued some post-secondary education by age 21, compared with those who received standard CIS services without mentoring. The educational benefits of mentoring were strongest for females. Analyses that linked mentoring interactions to these long-term outcomes indicated that the largest benefits were achieved when relationship-building with mentors was central and focused on addressing problems the youths were experiencing. 22 tables, 8 figures, and 51 references

Date Published: April 1, 2020