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How To Become A Parol Officer

Updated on May 7, 2015

Parole Officer Salary

The average parole officer salary ranges between approximately $35,000 - $60,000. Some parole officers will earn slightly less starting out. Some parole officers will progress to have a higher salary than the average range.

The average probation officer salary range is approximately $40,000 - $60,000 per year. While a small number of probation officers earn below $30,000 per year, as well as a small number earning more than $70,000 per year.

What is Probation/Parole Officer

When people have committed crimes but are no longer in prison they are placed on parole. People who don't go to prison are usually placed on probation. Probation is a trial period to see if those individuals can and are willing to live within society without committing more crimes. When on probation they are supervised by a probation officer. Probation officers have some things in common with police officers but they are strictly monitoring specific individuals not fighting crime within a geographical area or population. Parole officers and Probation officers have very similar job descriptions, parole officers are supervisors over those who have been released from prison and have a sentence to fulfill outside of prison.

Probation officers don't usually wear a government issued uniform, they dress business casual. They are issued a badge and they usually carry a concealed firearm or pepper spray.

Probation and Parole officers usually spend a fair amount of time in court helping the court determine whether or not a parolee has served well or not, if they should have their time reduced or added to. The officer does the investigation work and testifies in court. They also have regular meetings with the individuals they are supervising so they have the best idea about the parolee's behavior and service.

There multiple positions within the system dealing with different areas of legality, investigation, and supervision.


Keep A Clean Slate

Your criminal history will be checked and combed over. If you have any type of criminal history be honest and up front about it. Your history will be found. Honesty and integrity are a significant role in this job because of the type of clients you will be working with, many have a history of drug use and drug dealing, the local law enforcement cannot afford to have members of the team getting involved with unlawful acts. Some types of criminal offenses will prevent you from becoming a parole or probation officer.

Juvenile Probation Officer

Juvenile probation officers have very similar responsibilities to a probation officer supervising adults, however, they work with youth offenders instead of adults. Juvenile probation officers almost exclusively work with juveniles only, but in some places probation officers will work with both adults and youth.

-A juvenile probation officer will recommend sentences’ to the court. They will then work with the juvenile and their family to make sure that they understand what is required to fulfill the sentence.

-The probation officer will want to be a role model for the youth to help him or her not only fulfill the probation requirements but help the youth see what kind of person they could become and hopefully, have a different view of how to conduct themselves in daily living.

-The probation officer will also prepare and deliver accountability reports to the court regarding the juveniles obedience and behavior according their sentence. The probation officer will report both the positive and the negative behaviors of the juvenile.

-The officer will conduct drug tests and do searches of the youth’s room.

-they will be in regular contact with the youth's school, family and other agencies to make sure that the individual is complying to their probation sentence and laws.

What Can You Do?

  • Express enthusiasm to friends and family about becoming a parole officer (you never know, they might be asked).
  • Build a strong resume in public service, law and criminal justice.
  • Be persistent, promt, and enthused when applying.

Your Passion

Finding and training new probation officers is a lengthy and costly process therefore, when they higher, they want to know that you are serious about what you are doing and that you have a passion for upholding the law. If you are passionate about your job the chances of you sticking with it for many years are much more likely and they are aware of that. One way they can verify your passion for becoming a parole or probation officer is by talking to people you have associated yourself with such as former employers, coworkers, family and friends.


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