Prisoners: Literacy

House of Lords written question – answered on 4th May 2004.

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Photo of Lord Acton Lord Acton Labour

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Further to the Written Answer by the Baroness Scotland of Asthal on 25 March (WA 109–10), whether they will ensure that prison governors are aware of the advantages to prisoners of a system of educated prisoners teaching illiterate prisoners to read, as promoted by the Shannon Trust and other organisations.

Photo of Baroness Scotland of Asthal Baroness Scotland of Asthal Minister of State, Home Office, Minister of State (Home Office) (Criminal Justice and Offender Management)

The Prison Service appreciates the potential benefits of educated prisoners helping other prisoners to learn. There are plans to support activity to train prisoners, prison officers and staff from other agencies to become adult learner supporters. The main focus will be on the Link Up project, which is funded by the Department for Education and Skills, and delivered by the Basic Skills Agency. This project will be promoted to prisons through heads of learning and skills, who are the members of the prison senior management team responsible for raising awareness of and support for successful leaning schemes within the establishment.

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