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EDUCATION PHILANTHROPY DIVISION OF ASCENDIUM EDUCATION GROUP

Ascendium in the News May 18, 2021

Education Behind and Beyond Bars

Source: Inside Higher Ed
Author: Sarah Weissman

Colleges and universities, charitable and educational foundations, and various companies are investing in a spate of new courses or degree and certificate programs and services for incarcerated and formerly incarcerated students.

The growth in prison higher education and workforce training opportunities comes on the heels of a sea change this academic year for all students, including those in prison. The murder of George Floyd last summer and the protests that followed prompted higher education leaders to re-examine their criminal justice programs, campus policing practices and initiatives to recruit and retain students of color. The pandemic shut down in-person instruction at colleges, including at prison college programs, as coronavirus infections tore through overcrowded prisons and led to the early release of thousands of inmates.

Some advocates for higher education in prison see this national moment as a possible turning point for expanding the educational opportunities available to current and former inmates. In December, congressional lawmakers reallowed access to federal financial aid for incarcerated students after a 26-year ban.

Read the full article at Inside Higher Ed.

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