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Degrees of Freedom Report

Degrees of Freedom: Expanding College Opportunities for Currently and Formerly Incarcerated Californians, by Debbie A. Mukamal, Rebecca Silbert, and Rebecca Taylor is based on over 175 interviews, academic research, and historical investigation. The report profiles existing programs and identifies recommendations for California to take to build effective college pathways that will help these underserved students become college graduates.

College in Jail Toolkit: How to Build a Successful Partnership Between a Sheriff’s Department and a Community College

This toolkit will assist California’s community colleges and Sheriff’s Departments as they build partnerships to provide college education inside county jails.

Better Money Habits How-To Guide

Bank of America, in partnership with Khan Academy, released a how-to guide to their free toolkit, the Better Money Habits program. Better Money Habits is an interactive online tool kit that provides users with information to improve their financial literacy. This guide includes information about how to access key features, including setting financial goals, videos and worksheets designed for easy personal or classroom education use, and a comprehensive resources page designed to help people living paycheck to paycheck. 

New “Excused Withdrawal” for Incarcerated Students: Revision to Title 5

The California Community College Chancellor’s office has issued a revision to Title 5 allowing colleges to assign an “EW” to incarcerated students who are involuntarily transferred or released early. Read more to learn how this revision can impact your students. 

CLASP’s Reconnecting Justice: Lessons Learned and the Agenda Ahead Report

The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) published a report, by Duy Pham and Wayne Taliaferro, that illustrates key takeaways from their October 2016 forum, Reconnecting Justice: Pathways to Effective Reentry through Education and Training. The report focuses on the intersections of criminal justice, incarceration, and education, the positive impact of investments in correctional education, job training and supportive reentry services for communities with high incarceration rates, and includes federal and state policy recommendations. This report includes examples from California’s legislation and model practices in correctional education.

Degrees of Freedom Panel

Watch a panel discussion on the issues of providing college opportunities for currently and formerly incarcerated students. The panel is moderated by Larissa MacFarquhar, a staff writer at The New Yorker.

RAND Meta-Analysis of Correctional Education

RAND Corporation conducted a meta-analysis to examine the association between correctional education and reductions in recidivism, improvements in employment after release from prison, and learning in math and in reading. A key finding is that individuals who participated in college programs while incarcerated had 51% lower odds of recidivating than those who did not. 

Technology Inside CDCR Prisons for College Programs Webinar

The Opportunity Institute hosted a webinar to provide colleges teaching inside California state prisons the chance to hear directly from CDCR’s Offices of Correctional Education and Enterprise Information Systems. 

The President’s Role in Advancing Criminal Justice Reform

Harvard Law Review published a lengthy article by President Obama on the President’s responsibility to enhance criminal justice reform. The piece highlights the steps the Obama administration took to achieve systems changes within the criminal justice landscape, noting the important role higher education plays in reducing recidivism.