'GP' inmates to get expanded school programme

Published: Friday | December 27, 2013 Comments 0

There are plans to help inmates at 'GP' get better prepared for life outside its walls.

"We are repairing an old building so that we can have more inmates involved in the school programme," said Baldwin Collins, superintendent in charge of GP, officially known as the Tower Street Adult Correctional Centre, in Kingston.

"It's part of our plans for expanding the programme in 2014."

Collins was speaking with The Gleaner during the recent annual Christmas visit and family fun day hosted by the facility, in collaboration with the Lay Magistrates Association of Kingston.

Collins noted there were about 500 inmates involved in the school programme.

"Inmates are engaged at all levels, even up to GCE (General Certificate of Education) and CXC (Caribbean Examinations Council) standard," he said. "But we also bring them from the lowest level, those that weren't literate."

Collins, custos of Kingston Steadman Fuller and the Department of Corrections officials supervised the first batch of inmates to receive family members at the reunion. A big part of the school programme involves keeping the inmates aware of what is happening outside the prison's walls.

Newspapers important

An inmate, who is one of the teachers, said the newspapers help in the various subjects like mathematics, English language and information technology.

He and other inmates who were waiting for loved ones pleaded with the news team to see if it was possible to get more Gleaner newspapers into their system.

"Yu see Gleaner and mostly di Sunday Gleaner, a it have di real news," said one inmate.

The reunions take place on lands located across from the main prison facility. All around were signs of the inmates putting their hands and minds to good use, whether in making blocks or growing cabbage. Collins noted that the facility offers various other disciplines, including welding and plumbing.

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