Pasted below is a comment I added on the "Grits For Breakfast" blog website... if you've never been there, it's highly recommended!  There's almost SIXTY comments already on an article regarding the TYC/TJJD  transistion, and who will potentially be the new Executive Director.  This is a good time and a good place to ADD YOUR TWO CENTS.

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"What TJJD needs is to have a decision made "from the top" (who ever that ends up being) as to what the purpose of TJJD is. Is it indeed a finishing/prep school for TDCJ -- or not? Is is an agency devoted to rehabilitation, punishment, or WHAT??

Are incarcerated juveniles to be treated like "troubled youth" or the convicted felons they are? Kids sentenced to be locked up are NOT there for stealing a six pack of beer... they are murderers and rapists, people who pistol whip innocent victims and brag about it to their peers at night.

If the ED of the new agency wants to get serious about preventing recidivism, s/he will need to start treating these youth as PRISONERS and see there are NO MORE slip-n-slides and snow cones and such given as bribes for good behavior. As it stands, being locked up is more like being sentenced to a resort camp with a fence around it than a prison... the kids often times DON'T WANT TO LEAVE when their time is up.

To be effective, the new head of TJJD will need to adopt a harder line towards these offenders, and make it a place they DON'T want to be.

The bleeding heart coddling and kid gloves approach need to go... otherwise, the youth will just end up as career adult criminals who are used to -- and expect -- to be taken care of by the State."