Sample Paper on Education and Training Programs to Inmates in America

Education and Training Programs Available to Inmates across America

Prisons have been very closely associated with severe punishments in addition to the restrictions and the general loss of rights. Traditionally, prisons have been thought as places where wrong doers are restricted, for a period of time, coupled with correction in form of punishments until such people reform and can be released back to the society. However, one principal activity that takes place in American prisons is education of inmates. It is an activity that is worth reflecting. According to Bureau of Justice report about Education and Correctional Populations, over 90% of the prisons in states prisons and up to 100% of federal prisons were found to provide education to inmates (Harlow, 2003). Education and training programs are beneficial to the recipients and expenditure on such programs is thus justifiable.

Among the many benefits that accrue to education and training to inmates is provision of self- improvement opportunities which goes a long way in transforming the offenders into law-abiding citizens. Through provision of general education as well as availability of vocational training, prison inmate’ssignificantly stand high chances of securing employments as compared to peers who did not have such as opportunity.According to a research by RAND, a nonprofit research organization, prisoners who participated in academic and other vocational programs stood at a higher chance of about 13% of securing jobs upon release compared to those who did not. The research further established that 28% of recipients of vocational training were even more likely to land on jobs compared to those who did not participate in such.This key role of education to inmates in American prisons ensures that when they are released, the offenders are ready to interact and engage with the rest of the society constructively and lead a productive life (Davis, 2013).

According to the research by RAND, education programs for prisoner in the US have helped reduce the chances of committing other crimes. The research established that participation in correctional and educational programs by inmates was at 46% lower chances of returning to prison compared to those who do not participate in such programs. Much of this difference was attributed to the level of motivation amongst other differences, inhibited by recipients of correctional education as compared to those who did not receive such education (Davis, 2013).

Other that preventing the prisoners from retuning to prison on different charges, education in US has played a key role in preventing recidivism(Vacca, 2004).   This is the situation where a former prisoner is rearrested and charged on a similar offense. This mainly happens when there is retaliation as a result of negative consequences on a particular behavior. This is sometimes caused by frustration upon release coupled by difficulty in integration such that former inmates are highly capable of reoffending. However, through participation in programs such as social skills and problem solving, inmates find it much easier to interact with the communities when they are released. This is achieved through a comprehensive rehabilitation program through education. Efforts of preventing reoffending are not only beneficial to the individual ex-inmates but also have a clear economic implication in the sense that it saves money for the tax payers. Thus, breaking of re-offending cycle through proper training and education contributes to the growth of economy in the long run.

Moreover, education for prisoners also helps them understand their rights as prisoners. This has helped in reducing instances of cases or torture and unfair punishments. Among other rights, a prisoner in US has a right to not be punished cruelly or unusually and a right to due processes. Understanding their rights as prisoners is important because despite the need to place restrictions and withdrawing some rights for security purposes, inmates are human beings with emotions. It is also the understanding that prisons are not torture chambers but rehabilitation center, both for correction and behavior change.

Because of the outgoing benefits of education and training offered to US prisoners, the amounts of money spent by the government can, therefore, be considered to have been used for the right purpose. As noted earlier, education equips the prisoners with both technical and formal education which enhances their employability. Upon release, these people engage in profitable economic activities that contribute to the growth of the economy. Besides the this contribution to the economy, research by RAND established that prison education programs were relatively cost effective with costs estimated to be between $1,400 to $1,744 per inmate. Economically, the cost-benefit ratio of expenditure on inmates education against contribution to the economy would there be justified.Moreover, analysis of correctional educational programs have shown that an investment $1 in prison education reduces the cost of rehabilitation by up to $5. Equally, this proves a more that proportionate contribution to the economy(Davis, 2013).

Further, it is established that for every case of recidivism, there is a sad case of an American spending more on tax. This means that by providing education to the inmates, which reduces chances of reoffending as described above, US will be able to save on expenditure from tax. In the long run, this will be a major step in boosting the economy.

Lastly, as established, prisoners who do not receive education are likely to participate in similar or different offenses in future(Vacca, 2004). Therefore, by spending of prison education, the government ensures that it prevents instances of social ills in the communities. however huge the amounts for education may appear, education helps in containing future crimes leading to a better society. Social development; which is a modern parameter against which the development of any state is measured is a function of the number of crime levels and peaceful existence. Thus, education of inmates largely contributes to the social growth of any given nation.

In conclusion, as correction bodies of the government to navigate in times of constrained government expenditure education and training for inmates is an effective approach that not only benefits the inmates, but may also save money both in the short term and the long term. Hence, the justification of existence and complete support of such programs



Cited work

Harlow, C. W. (2003). Education and Correctional Populations.Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report.

Davis, L. M. (2013). Evaluating the effectiveness of correctional education: A meta-analysis of programs that provide education to incarcerated adults. Rand Corporation.

Vacca, J. S. (2004). Educated prisoners are less likely to return to prison. Journal of Correctional Education, 297-305.