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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 164907 Find in a Library
Title: England and Wales: The State of Prison Education
Journal: Journal of Correctional Education  Volume:47  Issue:2  Dated:(June 1996)  Pages:101-105
Author(s): W Forster
Date Published: 1996
Page Count: 5
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: After a review of the development of prison education in England and Wales, as well as the cultural and ideological issues that bear upon the service, this article addresses the changing position and influence of the prison education officer in the total institution.
Abstract: The paper concludes that it is not possible to provide an unambiguous portrait of the standing of education and the Education Officer in the prison system of England and Wales. It is in a state of diversity and flux. New ideas are gaining ground about the nature of prisons and imprisonment, about the relationships between the center and the prisons at the periphery, and about the relationships between different elements of prison regimes. These concepts must be grafted onto a system that is historically and culturally diverse within itself, since buildings range from the very new with superior facilities to the old and unsanitary; inmates range from the mentally retarded to the highly intelligent, from those who have emerged from traditional criminal cultures to those claiming to be "political," and they constitute an increasingly multicultural population that reflects the general population. For the Education Officer, there are changes in employment conditions and status that stem from the contracting of educational services to community education institutions, which began in 1993. Although the Education Officer may have a more defined role under such a system, creativity and flexibility have been put at risk; the program required is required by the "purchaser," not by the students. Further, the corrections education enterprise exists within a public climate of ambiguity and diversity regarding the purpose of imprisonment, whether it is to punish or reform. Still, in the midst of this diversity and confusion, most prison Education Officers succeed in managing useful and creative programs.
Main Term(s): Correctional education programs
Index Term(s): England; Foreign correctional systems; Inmate Education Assistance Programs; Wales
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