Offender Learning Green Paper summary

just a summary of the green paper that may come up in the exam

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Offender Learning Green Paper: Reducing
ReOffending through Skills &
On the 15 December 2005 the Government published a Green paper entitled Reducing
ReOffending Through Skills and Employment, jointly produced by the Department for Education
and Skills, the Home Office and the Department for Work and Pensions. This document sets out
our strategy to help reduce reoffending by improving skills and employment opportunities for
(683 KB)
The document sets out the case for action and outlines a radical vision to make a step change in four
main areas:
To focus strongly on jobs for offenders, with employers driving the design and delivery of
programmes, and new approaches to get offenders into work
Increasing the quality and effectiveness of learning and skills delivered to offenders, to
improve their skills in prisons and when released
Promoting greater coherence in the ways in which offenders are trained and prepared for
employment within prisons and probation services and
Motivating and engaging offenders, including through a new `employability contract', with a
strong emphasis on rights and responsibilities.
This paper recognises the need to deal with the range of factors which lead some offenders into a
cycle of repeat offending. This cycle carries a considerable cost to the Exchequer: a reoffending
former prisoner costs the criminal justice system an average of £65,000 up to the point of
reimprisonment and £40,000 each year in prison. On top of this, there are often unquantifiable
costs to the victims of crime and their communities.
An important part of the Government strategy is a concerted drive to transform the skills and
employment prospects of offenders. The challenge is stark. A majority of offenders have poor skills,
with over half having no qualifications at all. Nearly half have experienced exclusion from school.
Two thirds were unemployed before prison.
Evidence suggests that employment and a reduction in reoffending are linked, and that stability and
quality of employment are key factors. Accordingly, there is a strong case, as part of our wider
strategy, for seeking to get more offenders into jobs, and to raise their skill levels in order to improve
their chances of becoming more productive and successful in employment, to the benefit of
individuals, their families, and the wider society that would be damaged by continued offending.
A great deal of progress has been made in recent years. Increased investment has raised the
capacity of the prison education service, and improved basic skills training for offenders in the
community. Achievement of qualifications in literacy, language and numeracy has more than doubled
since 2001. Prisons are subject to the same demanding standards of inspection as other education

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Jobcentre Plus offers employment and training advice to
offenders in prisons and, with the help of additional Prison Service investment.
We propose to test new approaches in order to make the best use of the resources and capacity
within the system. We look forward to the widest possible debate with employers, with the
learning and skills sector, and with colleagues working in prisons, probation and in jobcentres.…read more


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