Education in Prison

Topics: Prison, Higher education, Education Pages: 9 (2012 words) Published: December 4, 2014

Educating Inmates: They Are Still Human Too
Jazmine Endsley
March 7, 2014
Planning and Evaluation
Dr. Bronson
We live in a modern society that still hold traditional morals and beliefs. Prisoners are seen as inhumane animals who bring nothing but misery and cruelty to the world. An education is one of the most important things one may ever receive in their lives. One can no longer gain any type of employment without a high school education and even college hours, so why would society care to hold anyone back from getting an education? Prisoners are having a hard time receiving education in the prison system today. No one seems to care or support prisoners in the challenging process it takes to change their lives. County jails do not offer education programs, and in prison facilities there are many limitations and restrictions that make receiving the sub-par education that they offer a challenge to receive. An evaluation needs to take place to determine the crux of education limitations are in prison. There are many people who have been to prison or who have family and friends who have been to prison and have some sense of understanding as to the challenges inmates face. Who is standing up and being the voice for inmates who rarely are heard, and who is pushing the envelope against society and stressing the importance of education. Inmates who will be released one day must have a backup plan other than a life of crime, so their needs to be a system or program in place to reform inmates before their release.

In researching about education everything found seems to enhance the knowledge on education in prison. It has become astoundingly clear that society does not promote a positive change for people who are incarcerated. Society has an outdated view of people incarcerated and do not seem interested in changing it. No one plans life with the idea in mind that prison will be a part of it. With family and friends who have been incarcerated, I will be the first one to say that not all imprisoned people are innocent, but mistakes do happen. Society feels that bringing education into the correctional system is a waste of time and effort. Many students feel that inmates should not be offered for free what they have to pay for, but what most people do not realize is that not only do the inmates pay for education just like most, but they are also receiving a below average education. Although education has been in the prison system for over a century, society deters from education socially, politically, and economically (Palmer, 2012). In the long run however, it creates more setbacks for an inmate upon release seeing as though many jobs require post-secondary education. The decision to evaluate education in the prison system is to get a better understanding as to why there is not a nationwide push on inmates bettering themselves and staff support to follow as well. There are several barriers that prevent inmates from successfully completing programs while incarcerated. Some factors are due to environmental circumstances and other factors are due to personal circumstances. Conflicts between officers and inmates as well as transfers can lead to inmate’s incompletion of their education program. Also inmates who are released have no after plan set up between them, the prison system, and other sources to assist with the completion of an education started while incarcerated. There is no assistance for released inmates that encourages them to continue pursuing education. Psychological disorders and the stress of school itself may lead to an inmate dropping out or incompletion of the program. When inmates become depressed or discouraged they give up and education falls to the bottom of their list of priorities. Mental disorders that inmates receive medication for, may affect their ability to learn and the stress of how to cope and manage may cause an inmate to quit...

References: Lahm, K. F. (2009). Educational Participation and Inmate Misconduct. Journal Of Offender Rehabilitation, 48(1), 37.
Lockard, J., & Rankins-Robertson, S. (2011). The Right to Education, Prison-University Partnerships, and Online Writing Pedagogy in the US. Critical Survey, 23(3), 23-39.
Palmer, S. M. (2012). Postsecondary Correctional Education. Adult Learning, 23(4), 163-169.
Rafay, A. (2012). An "Impossible Profession"? The Radical University in Prison. Radical Teacher, (95), 10-21.
Sedgley, N. H., Scott, C. E., Williams, N. A., & Derrick, F. W. (2010). Prison 's Dilemma: Do Education and Jobs Programmes Affect Recidivism?. Economica, 77(307), 497-517.
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