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Prisons: Education

Question for Ministry of Justice

UIN 81870, tabled on 25 November 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference to the report entitled Unlocking Potential, A review of education in prison, published in May 2016, what progress has been made in implementing the recommendations contained in that review.

Answered on

30 November 2021

Following Dame Sally Coates’ 2016 review, the budget for prison education was moved from the Department for Education (DfE) to the Ministry of Justice. This was in response to the core recommendation to give prison governors more flexibility and control over the curriculum so that they could better meet the learning needs of their prisoners. To address further recommendations, we introduced assessment on entry for English, maths and learning difficulties and disabilities, and boosted the capability of prisons to engage with employers through the creation of the New Futures Network (NFN). We expect to further improve the infrastructure for learning through the Government’s commitment to invest £200 million a year by 2024-25 to tackle reoffending and meet the manifesto commitment of delivering a new Prisoner Education Service. We have already started to trial innovation such as specialist education roles, as well as invest in digital tools to support prisoners with additional learning needs, such as trialling the use of reader pens.

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