Young Offenders: Rehabilitation

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 10th September 2021.

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Photo of Lyn Brown Lyn Brown Shadow Minister (Justice)

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the impact of the length of prison education classes on their efficacy for (a) young people and (b) people with learning disabilities.

Photo of Alex Chalk Alex Chalk Assistant Whip, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

In the youth estate, the delivery and access to education is a statutory requirement for all children in custody and a key element of the youth custody provision. Work is currently under way to commission a new education service for under-18 Young Offenders Institutions (YOIs) in England to improve the learning outcomes for children in YOIs by supporting the integration of custody, education and health services, and developing a better understanding of education outcomes for children in custody. There has been no specific assessment as to the length of education classes in relation to their efficacy, with the aims of a new education service to provide a needs-based education offer of high quality.

In the adult estate for prisoners aged 18+, the length of sessions is determined at a local level by each prison and is not mandated centrally. As such, no assessment has been made of the impact of the length of education classes. However, we are working to improve neurodiversity assessments and the provision of good quality specialist support. This includes trialling a new specialist neurodiversity support manager role who will be responsible for leading on a strategy to support neurodiverse prisoners to achieve and progress. We will also be seeking to build learning from the ‘independent review of neurodiversity in the criminal justice system’ evidence into future plans for improving education.

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