Prison Education Works!

prison educationJustice and Education Departments Announce New Research Showing Prison Education Reduces Recidivism, Saves Money, Improves Employment
August 22, 2013

“Attorney General Eric Holder and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan today announced research findings showing that, on average, inmates who participated in correctional education programs had 43 percent lower odds of returning to prison than inmates who did not.  Each year approximately 700,000 individuals leave federal and state prisons; about half of them will be reincarcerated within three years.  The research, funded by the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Assistance, was released today by the RAND Corporation.

“These findings reinforce the need to become smarter on crime by expanding proven strategies for keeping our communities safe, and ensuring that those who have paid their debts to society have the chance to become productive citizens,” said Attorney General Holder.  “We have an opportunity and an obligation to use smart methods – and advance innovative new programs – that can improve public safety while reducing costs.  As it stands, too many individuals and communities are harmed, rather than helped, by a criminal justice system that does not serve the American people as well as it should.  This important research is part of our broader effort to change that.”

The findings, from the largest-ever analysis of correctional educational studies, indicate that prison education programs are cost effective.  According to the research, a one dollar investment in prison education translates into reducing incarceration costs by four to five dollars during the first three years after release, when those leaving prison are most likely to return.”

Education and Vocational Training in Prisons Reduces Recidivism, Improves Job Outlook
RAND Corporation, August 22, 2013

“As corrections officials struggle to cope during a period of constrained government spending, prison education is an approach that may help save money in even the short term,”

“Prison inmates who receive general education and vocational training are significantly less likely to return to prison after release and are more likely to find employment than peers who do not receive such opportunities, according to a new RAND Corporation report.”

“The findings, from the largest-ever meta-analysis of correctional educational studies, suggest that prison education programs are cost effective, with a $1 investment in prison education reducing incarceration costs by $4 to $5 during the first three years post-release.”

Evaluating the Effectiveness of Correctional Education – 2013
A Meta-Analysis of Programs That Provide Education to Incarcerated Adults

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