How beneficial is Prison Education?

 In 2015 The Ministry of Justices’ Dame Sally Coats said,

If education is the engine of social mobility, it is also the engine of prisoner rehabilitation.” but just how effective is educating our prisoners?

There are pros and cons to educating our prisoners. Many argue that it costs the Government too much of the tax payers’ money and others might say that criminals simply don’t deserve an education. It’s known that it’s a tough job getting prisoners to engage in education, even when it’s placed right in front of them in it’s most accessible form. The truth is, many prisoners had negative experiences of school and therefore can’t engage properly in the classroom.

However, the benefits of educating our prisoners outweighs the negatives ten-fold. Everyone has the potential to become a constructive addition to their community and our society, in some cases, it simply needs tapping into a little harder. It’s been proven that educating prisoners makes the, less likely to offend again making our communities much safer.

Prisoners who leave life behind bars having received an education provide the world with someone who was a bigger and better contributor than before. Prison education can improve a person’s well-being, be that mental and physical. It increases their human capital and social capital and can give them the opportunity to contribute to community culture.

Here at the IOEE, we focus on educating prisoners in enterprising and entrepreneurial skills. Most offenders have been used to being fiercely independent, extremely resourceful and able to spot opportunities – all great attributes when starting to run a business.

As part of our role as the only dedicated learning institute for enterprise and entrepreneurship, we have developed a wide range of enterprise resources and qualifications which have been used to support the successful delivery of thousands of qualifications within prisons across the UK.

Traditional employment often discriminates against those with a criminal record however we know through our research that many offenders already have the attributes needed to become successful in the world of enterprise and entrepreneurship, it’s just helping them to recognise how they can be used legitimately.

We pride ourselves in what we do for the entrepreneurial education of prisoners and can truly see the benefit of it too. If you’ d like to find out more about how we support the education of prisoners through enterprise, click here: