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European Commission Contributions to

Prison Education and Training –

Recent developments in DG Education & Culture

12th ICPA Conference 2010

Pre-Conference on ICT and Knowledge Management
Gent (Belgium), 23 October 2010

Alan Smith
Grundtvig Coordinator
Deputy Head of Unit EAC – B3 Adult Education; Grundtvig
European Commission

 Overall European Commission engagement with

prison education and training
 DG Education and Culture:
– Lifelong Learning programme (Grundtvig,
Leonardo da Vinci, J Monnet)
– European Conference on Prison Education
 Update and perspectives
European Commission
 DG Education & Culture
– European Conference on Prison Education – « Pathways to
Inclusion » (Budapest, February 2010)
– Follow-up review of research and analysis on prison education and
– Continuing support through the Lifelong Learning programme LLP
(Grundtvig and Leonardo da Vinci): 2011 priorities

 DG Justice: Green Paper on Detention, spring 2011

– Section on prison education and training, drawing on the results of
– Public consultation following publication of the Green Paper

 DG Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities

– Ex-Offenders Community of Practice (ExOCoP): Madrid seminar on
E&T, ICPA pre-conference
– European Social Fund - ongoing support and planning for the future
Grundtvig and Leonardo support for
prison education 2000-2009
 89 projects identified in total
 Majority (73) funded through Grundtvig
 14 projects funded through Leonardo
 2 project funded by Accompanying Measures and Joint
 Majority of eligible European countries involved, either as
lead or partner
– Strong involvement from ES (38 projects), IT and DE
(37 projects), UK (36 projects)
– Only small countries (IS and LIE) not involved
Grundtvig / Leonardo
Themes and Target Groups
 Most commonly addressed themes:
– transition and reintegration
– adult basic education
– prison as an environment for learning
– arts and cultural creativity
– e-Learning
 Focus on (ex-) offenders in general or prison
staff / educators – fewer projects worked with
specific groups of offenders
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (DA)

 Title: The Open Door Project
 Description: The Open Door Project aimed to
deliver basic skills and computer skills training
to ex-prisoners in order to enhance their
chances of benefiting educational and/or
employment opportunities.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (DA)

 Title: FIT - Flexibility in prison teaching
 Description: The goals of this project were to
develop and reinforce contact between
several institutions that carry out prison
teaching, and to make teaching for adults in
institutions more flexible.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Joint actions

 Title: EEPPI - Educational Project for Penitentiary
 Description: The main objective of the project was to
foster training of prisoners, especially young
prisoners, within a multidisciplinary context of basic,
social and ICT skills in order to help their socialisation
and reintegration into the labour market. EEPPI
intended to set up, pilot and evaluate a training net
(Intranet) - a virtual, multilingual platform
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Leonardo
 Title: Dissemination of an e-business to promote the
training of European students (DELFEE)
 Description: This project involved the distribution and
dissemination of a collaborative distance learning
training module. The aim was twofold: to enhance the
abilities of students so that they can find work more
easily and to develop lifelong learning among a more
specific target group i.e. staff of SME's, trainees, the
disabled and prisoners.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (CA)

 Title: BREAKOUT – An interactive learning
environment for offending prevention and
 Description: The project aims to develop innovative
learning approaches, methods and tools. A key
innovation is to develop and evaluate a blended e-
learning environment to help prisoners, young adults
at risk of offending and ex-offenders to explore the
implications of 'life decisions' and the consequences
of a 'life of crime'.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (CA)

 Title: PIPELINE – Partnerships in Prison
Education: Learning in Networked
 Description: PIPELINE was developed to
help to improve prison education in Europe by
making ICT available to learners and teachers
in correctional education.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (CA)

 Title: Game On
 Description: The project aimed to create e-
learning materials and e-games in small,
accessible units, to improve personal
development and work sustainability skills in
prisoners and ex-offenders, including
additionally marginalised groups of prisoners,
i.e. deaf prisoners and those who are learning
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (DA)

 Title: Project to Accelerate the Development
of Distance Learning Environments
 Description: The project set out to explore
the use and methods of distance and e
learning in the partner countries, and whether
these can extend the range of education and
training available to prisoners.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig
 Title: A New Chance
 Description: The aim of this project was to
improve the provision of support to enable ex-
offenders to integrate back into society. The
main focus of the project was digital literacy.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (CA)

 Title: European Resettlement Training and
Education for Prisoners
 Description: The project aimed to raise the
quality of education in prisons by developing
specialised training courses for teachers
working in prisons and to improve the quality
of prison education by making use of ICT.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (CA)

 Title: ELBEP – Eliminating Language Barriers in
European Prisons through Open and Distance
Education Technology
 Description: The main aim of the project is to solve
communication problems between European prison
staff and foreign prisoners, in DE, BE, GR. It offers
second language education to prison staff through an
on-line learning environment, focussing on Russian,
Polish, Spanish, Greek and Turkish (foreign prisoners
speaking these native languages compose significant
proportions of the European prison population).
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci
 Programme: Grundtvig (CA)
 Title: Knowledge for future integration of marginalized and
disadvantaged citizens
 Description: The project aimed to develop a new approach to
prison education, through the introduction of a conceptual
framework for the development of alternative educational
methods, approaches and tools for successful reintegration of
marginalized groups into the society. The tutors who worked with
prisoners were introduced to an integrated way of learning
(traditional and e-learning) with emphasis on 2D and 3D
simulations, which enable greater interactivity and independence
in the education process.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (CA)

 Title: Virtual European Prison School
 Description: The main aim of the project was
to increase the participation of offenders in
lifelong learning, in order to secure their
reintegration to society on release. The Virtual
European Prison School offers multilingual
teaching materials and a forum for the
exchange of good practices via an online
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Leonardo
 Title: Community Integration and Cohesion (C.I.C)
 Description: The project focused on developing
methods to promote integration and cohesion
amongst adult learners, particularly those from inner-
city areas and /or disadvantaged/ marginalised
communities. The aim of the project is to develop a
training product made up of a DVD plus tutor and
trainee workbooks.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Leonardo
 Title: Learning Infrastructure for Correctional
Services - European Transfer (LICOS)
 Description: This project aims to develop a
European e-learning framework for prison
education. E-learning provides knowledge on
a level which can be tailored to the individual,
meeting the educational needs of a large
variety of learners.
eLearning / IT projects in Grundtvig
and Leonardo da Vinci

 Programme: Grundtvig (DA)

 Title: E-Learning Education for Prisoners and
Prisoners Professionals (EEPP)
 Description: The primary objective of the project is to
establish and develop a dialogue among prison
organisational and managerial staff and teachers from
educational organisations engaged in working with
prisoners, on issues, dynamics and experiences
related to the use of ICT and distance learning for
those at risk of social exclusion, particularly prisoners,
and prisoners professionals.
Other relevant parts of « LLP »

 Jean Monnet: Support for European Associations:

European Prison Education Association (2010)

 Transversal Programme: Key Activity 3: ICT

Key Activity 3 - ICT

 Actions: are not about developing technology

itself, but about its use to enhance learning
environments and experiences. This includes
areas such as the use of simulations, discovery
learning, attracting drop-outs back to education,
enabling learning outside school environments
and bridging the 'digital divide' between those
with access to technologies and skills, and those
Key Activity 3 - ICT

 Activities supported:
– Projects to encourage innovation and creativity
in learning and teaching and to boost the use
of new ICT tools and trends, particularly for
groups at risk of exclusion, such as early
school leavers, ethnic minorities and elderly
– Networks to promote greater linking up and
connectivity between learning communities
and creativity and innovation.
EU update – additional aspects:
Lifelong Learning Programme (LLP)
 Call for Proposals 2011 expected by 31 October

 Cooperation projects and networks (centralised

actions) open to all countries worldwide from 2010

 Public consultation on future programme 2014-

2020: launched 15 September, open until 30
November 2010
LLP 2011 – Grundtvig priorities
relevant for prison education
 Multilateral projects:
– Acquiring key competences through adult
learning (including digital competence)
– Strengthening social cohesion through adult
learning (including a specific line on use of ICT,
e-Learning, new media to widen access)
 Networks:
– Improved learning opportunities for prisoners
and ex-prisoners, building on the results of the
Budapest conference
EU update – additional aspects:
E-INCLUSION initiative
(DG Information Society)
 The need
– 74 million Europeans with low levels of education do not
use the internet
– Only 1 in 3 unemployed use internet regularly
– 35% in remote and rural areas do not use ICT
– 10% of >65 use internet (47% of overall adults)
 The objective
– Ensure that the opportunities created by modern digital
technology are open to everyone – no matter who they are
or where they live…
– And that these technologies are used to overcome social
and economic exclusion
« Pathways to Inclusion »

 Broad spectrum of stakeholders

 30 countries across Europe
 High degree of satisfaction: 97%-100% said:
– Better understanding of prison E&T in other European countries
– Better understanding of European programmes and policies for prison E&T
– Inspiration for future projects and networking
– Usefulness of documentation for the conference

 Commitment to follow-up
– 40 organisations showed interest in helping to deliver follow-up activities
– European level follow-up in various ways
« Pathways to Inclusion »
- Working Groups

 Key issues
– Adult basic education
– Arts and creativity
– Guidance, validation of prior learning, individual learning plans
– Vocational training
– IT
– Prison as a positive learning environment (governor, prison officers…)
– Transition and reintegration – the role of prison education and training
– Teacher training for prison education
– Research
« Pathways to Inclusion »
- Working Groups

 Specific categories of inmates

– Juveniles offenders
– Foreign offenders / ethnic minorities
– Female offenders and gender issues
– Long-sentence offenders
– Short-sentence offenders
– Offenders with special needs / disabilities

 European programmes
– Grundtvig
– Leonardo da Vinci
– EQUAL and the European Social Fund
« Pathways to Inclusion »
- Key Outcomes (1)

 Problems facing E&T in prisons

– Overcrowding and diversity of population
– Public finances
– Shrinking job opportunities

 Rationale for E&T in prisons

– Human rights
– Reducing recidivism
« Pathways to Inclusion »
- Key Outcomes (2)

 Overall delivery of E&T in prisons

– Cross-agency / ministry collaboration
– Early diagnosis of needs
– Follow-up support and strengthening links with community

 Integration of E&T in prisons in overall E&T systems

– Keeping pace with educational reforms ‘outside’
– Recognition and validation of prior learning
– Guidance and counselling
– Individual learning plans
– Utilising IT developments
« Pathways to Inclusion »
- Key Outcomes (3)

 Content and curriculum of E&T in prisons

– Holistic approach: social & personal skills + cognitive learning
– Better integration of education and training
– Vocational training to be relevant for modern labour market

 Need for more and better preparation of staff involved in E&T

in prisons
– Initial training of teachers
– Continuing training and professional development
– Training of prison officers
– Awareness-raising of prison governors
« Pathways to Inclusion »
- Key Outcomes (4)
 Awareness-raising in the world ‘outside’ regarding the benefits of E&T in
prisons for society at large
– Key officials
– General public
– Vocational training to be relevant for modern labour market

 Need for more and better research and analysis

– Relevant key themes
– High standards (methodology + ethics)
– Improved transfer to practice
– Dissemination of results
– Need for European networks
– Need for greatly improved funding
« Pathways to Inclusion »
- Key Outcomes (5)

 EU programmes
– A vital source of support for innovation
– Need for more systematic dissemination of results
– Major increase in funding for prison E&T needed
– If possible, a dedicated programme for prison E&T
– More involvement of the NGOs
– Improved cooperation between Commission departments
– New projects and networks born in Budapest
« Pathways to Inclusion » ICT Group:
Future areas to focus on

 Security issues
 Pedagogical developments:
– Materials for learners
– Transforming ‘teachers’ into ‘learning facilitators’
– Better interlinkage with modern developments in E&T outside prison

 Improving the prison as a place of learning

– Role of ICT in training prison officers and engaging them in prison E&T
– Technical support facilities
– Personalised learning / learning in learning centres (avoid isolation)
– Linking education, training and work

 More and better research and analysis

Research review
 Cost-effectiveness (employment / reoffending)
 Prison as positive learning environment
 Content: specific subject areas
 Guidance, validation, learner plans, assessment
 Vocational training and the labour market
 E-Learning platforms and distance learning
 Initial and in-service teacher training
 Release-transition-reintegration
 Backgrounds, profiles, learning needs and motivations / specific
categories of offenders
 Effects of European funding
 Evaluation, indicators, benchmarking, quality assurance
 Public opinion and awareness-raising strategies
Research review - eLearning

 Difficulty in obtaining literature

 Geographical bias: only UK, DE, FR literature
identified so far
 Please contribute !!
Useful further contacts
 Europ.Conf. on Prison Educ. “Pathways to Inclusion” (Budapest, Feb. 2010)
 Literature review : research and analysis on prison education
 EU Grundtvig programme for adult learning including prison education
– National Agencies (see links on above website)
 EU Leonardo da Vinci programme for vocational training, also in prison
 Public consultation on the future Lifelong Learning programme
 E-Inclusion
– (

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