Advice for prisoners

Our advice service is an integral element of the Access To Learning team. The Advice Manager regularly visits prisons and YOIs, often with other PET or Open University staff, to promote the opportunities available through distance learning. Over the twelve month period to August 2014, 30 prisons were visited across England and Wales. During these visits, we support and guide the prison staff responsible for distance learning and meet with current and potential students in custody to explain their options and to offer guidance on qualifications, learning progression and careers.

We also produce written materials, such as a distance learning curriculum and leaflets explaining distance learning and loans, then distribute these across the prison estate. We are currently developing interactive content for the virtual campus which will enable more prisoners to access information about the wide range of learning opportunities that we can fund.

We work closely with the distance learning course suppliers in order to ensure that courses can be delivered in a prison environment, and also to help them develop new courses that will be useful to prisoners.

When funding applications are assessed in our monthly scrutiny process, advice is often given to applicants to suggest alternative courses, for example ones that offer more widely-recognised accreditation.

Much of the advice is given from the PET offices via email, letter and telephone. Every month we respond to dozens of queries about distance learning from prisoners, the prison staff who support them, prisoners' families and other agencies.

If you have a question about learning in prison we will do our best to help, contact us now:

John Lister, Advice Manager, PET

Phone: 0203 752 5680

Post:   FREEPOST Prisoners’ Education Trust