Bureau Literacy Program
|Program Description||The Literacy Program is designed to help inmates develop foundational knowledge and skill in reading, math, and written expression, and to prepare inmates to get a General Educational Development (GED) credential. The completion of the Literacy Program is often only the first step towards adequate preparation for successful post-release reintegration into society.|
|Time Frame||Depending on student needs, students participate in literacy classes for a varied length of time. Literacy classes are scheduled Monday through Friday. Each literacy class session meets a minimum of 1 1/2 hours per day. With few exceptions, inmates without a confirmed GED or high school diploma are required to enroll and participate in the Literacy Program for a minimum of 240 instructional hours or until they achieve a GED credential.|
|Admission Criteria||All inmates without a GED or a high school diploma are enrolled in literacy classes in Bureau correctional facilities.
The following inmates are not required to attend the Literacy Program:
(1) pretrial inmates; (2) inmates committed for purpose of study and observation under the provisions of 18 U.S.C. 4205(c), 4241(d), or, effective November 1, 1987, 18 U.S.C. 3552(b); (3) sentenced deportable aliens; and (4) inmates determined by staff to be temporarily unable to participate in the Literacy Program due to special circumstances beyond their control (e.g., due to a medical condition, transfer on writ, on a waiting list for initial placement). However, these inmates are required to participate when the special circumstances are no longer applicable.
|Program Content||Program content focuses on developing foundational knowledge and skill in reading, math, and written expression, and preparing inmates to get a GED.
Inmates withdrawing from literacy programs prior to obtaining a GED will be restricted to the lowest pay and have an inability to vest or earn the maximum amount of Good Conduct Time. Occupational training programs generally require a GED/High School Diploma or concurrent enrollment in a Literacy Program.
|Empirical Support||Research has shown that passing the GED test increases earnings for some dropouts, but that labor market payoffs take time (Murnane, Willett, & Tyler, 2000; Tyler, 2004; Tyler & Berk, 2008; Tyler, Murnane, & Willett, 2000, 2003). GED credentials provide a pathway into postsecondary education, and finishing even a short- term program offers important economic benefits to GED recipients (Patterson, Zhang, Song & Guison-Dowdy, 2010).|
|Applicable Policies||5350.28 Literacy Program (GED Standard).
5300.21 Education Training and Leisure Time Program Standards.
5353.01 Occupational Education Programs.
|Institution Locations||All Bureau facilities offer the Literacy Program.|