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4th Generation Risk and Needs Assessment (RANA)

DJJ’s previous risk assessment system was a “second generation" assessment that only measured static risk factors (e.g., age, criminal history). These measurements provided limited information on what needed to be done to reduce a young person's risk to re-offend and provided no information on their needs.

The current 4th generation RANA tool measures Static risk factors and Dynamic risk factors.

Static Factors include: Age at 1st Offense; Number of Prior Referrals

Dynamic Factors include: Drug and Alcohol Use; History of Runaway; Parents' History of Incarceration; Parents' Ability to Supervise; School Attendance and Behavior; Gang Involvement; Trauma Experience

Once a juvenile’s needs are identified, targeted services can then be provided to reduce their risk to re-offend. The new assessment meets the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention’s (OJJDP) recommendations for risk and needs assessments, and provides DJJ staff, Solicitors' Offices and Family Courts with accurate and reliable information on the juvenile’s risks and needs.

Development of RANA

DJJ selected a proven and previously implemented model and then modified it to the agency's specific needs. The tool is based on the Risk And Needs Assessment Instrument (RANA) developed for Texas DJJ which has been in use since 2009 and is used with over 60,000 Texas juvenile offenders annually. A multi-divisional team from SCDJJ worked with the same vendor who created the Texas model to develop the new assessment system tailored specifically for South Carolina. Through this process, certain risk and needs factors were identified as being predictors for recidivism for South Carolina's youth. 

    RANA Procedure

    The initial RANA is completed during intake. The DJJ recommendation is determined based on the juvenile’s risk level and the category of the most serious current offense. The recommendation is calculated automatically for each phase of the juvenile justice system.

    RANA Review and Updates

    The Community Case Manager reviews the juvenile’s Risk and Needs Assessment (RANA) as information becomes available to ensure demographic, educational, mental health, emotional, medical, and other related information is current.

    The Community Case Manager updates the RANA in the agency's Juvenile Justice Management System (JJMS) and in the case file when new information is provided. The RANA is reviewed at the time of a new referral, at the time of a probation or parole violation, after a community or secure evaluation, and upon return from alternative placement or a commitment. All updates are noted in JJMS.

    RANA is a working document and is updated anytime new information becomes available.

    Benefits of RANA

    The Risk And Needs Assessment is a beneficial tool that allows the Community Case Manager to make the most comprehensive recommendations based on the individual youth.

    The RANA helps identify the young person's needs, which then help staff secure appropriate services and ultimately reduce the juvenile’s risk to re-offend.

    The 4th generation Risk and Needs Assessment not only gives a comprehensive risk score and recommendation for cases managers to use in court, but also allows data to be collected in a way that it can be used.