"Children in danger of becoming juvenile delinquents can be identified early in life and saved from a life of crime," Sheldon and Eleanor Glueck, Harvard Law School psychologists, reported yesterday to the 16th annual meeting of the World Federation for Mental Health.
The Gluecks presented the meeting, held in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, with the results of field tests designed to test the validity of Mr. and Mrs. Glueck's "Social Prediction Table."
The Social Prediction Table is a formula which, through examination of environmental factors such as maternal supervision and family cohesiveness, can be used to distinguish between potential delinquents and non-delinquents.
In 1952 boys between the ages of five and six were tested by the New York City Youth Board. At the age of 17, 96.4 per cent of those boys given a low chance of delinquency have remained non-delinquent. Of the boys given a high chance of delinquency, 35.1 per cent have already become delinquent.
Preliminary findings of the Commissioner's Youth Council in Washington, D.C., have been similar to the New mine at an early age which school children are in substantial danger of do-York figures.
Mr. and Mrs. Glueck, saying that "in delinquency one is dealing not with destiny but with destination, and that destination can hopefully be altered," emphasized that delinquency "can no longer be left to the untutored and painless efforts of modern parents."
The two psychologists maintained that by using "prediction devices to deter-veloping into persistent delinquents because of faulty parental attitudes and behavior," it will be possible "to detect early signs of impending trouble and furnish skillful and timely therapy and instruction to children and parents in situations found to be critical."
The Gluecks noted that aid would have to be given not only to the children themselves but also to the parents so that they can change their child-rearing practices.