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Opinion: Take Care over Cost in Juvenile Justice

Michigan is one of only five states that treat 17-year-olds as adults in the criminal justice system, which harms not only those young people being jailed but also local communities and the state economy.

Opinion: Turn Prisons into Colleges

If we believe education is a civil right that improves society and increases civic engagement, then the purpose of prison education shouldn’t be about training people to develop marketable skills for the global economy. Instead, learning gives us a different understanding of ourselves and the world around us, and it provides us tools to become more empathetic.

Why Hiring People out of Prison Will Be Your Next Workforce Strategy

As the labor market tightens in our expanding economy, companies will need workers. And people returning to society from prison need jobs. Keeping potential employers and employees apart is fear, lack of understanding, and about 20,000 statutes and regulations across the country that restrict the hiring of ex-offenders.

All Means All: Q&A about Using ESSA to Improve Education in Juvenile Justice Facilities

Regardless of the state’s structure, students in juvenile facilities should not be left behind. The Every Student Succeeds Act gives states the flexibility to rethink how juvenile justice schools might be included in a state’s accountability plan in a way that takes into account the unique context of the facilities and student population.

Ensuring the Last Chance for Kids in the Arizona Justice System Isn’t a Dead End

Heather Griller Clark was a teacher for the Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections, which operates its own one-school district at Adobe Mountain. Its teachers are all Arizona-certified and subject to the same requirements as public school teachers outside the fence for core content areas. Some are certified in vocational education, and those are the teachers Griller Clark is working with to improve the odds of success for youths who leave Adobe Mountain.

Environmental Programs Grow a Better Prison System

Environmental training programs can play a major role in transforming both the prison system and the communities most affected by the system. A prime example is San Quentin’s Insight Prison Garden Program. San Quentin partners with Planting Justice to provide master gardener training to inmates while they’re incarcerated, as well as to offer job placement after release.

How Tech Firms Are Embracing Ex-prisoners

In Denver, Colorado, Mile High ­WorkShop wants to be the first employer of record for a string of former inmates. Inside a 12,000-square-foot warehouse, those employees handle woodworking, sewing, and order fulfillment, and they manufacture ceramic components. In just two years, 50 people have moved through the company, with half finding permanent employment; just two have reoffended.

Reintegrating the Formerly Incarcerated

In a 2014 study by the National Endowment for the Arts called The Prison Arts Resource Project, the authors conducted an evaluation of 48 evidence-based studies that evaluated the impact of arts programs in U.S. prisons. Many of the studies found that inmates who participated in arts programs showed significant increases in motivation, self confidence, self-esteem, and work ethic.

Cumberland County, PA Prison Reentry Program Aims to Help Inmates Return to Community

To date, none of the participants in the reentry program have been rearrested for a new offense and some have even gone on to attend college said Ashley Rohm, coordinator for the Cumberland County Adult Reentry Program. “These are people who came from our community and will be returning to our community,” she said. “Why wouldn’t we want to help them?”

Imperial County Looks to Reduce Recidivism with Unique Education Program

Sheriff Loera said he has been in law enforcement for more than 40 years and believes this is one of the most successful programs he has seen. “I would encourage any county to get involved in a program like this. It works and it’s going to have a big payoff in the end.”

New Law Helps Offenders Who Help Themselves

A new Illinois law gives a break to ex-offenders who finish high school and other courses while incarcerated by allowing them to apply to have their criminal records sealed without waiting years to begin the process.