Fife College and Scottish Prison Service continue learning and skills partnership until 2023 – FE News

Fife College will continue to deliver courses at Scottish Prison Service establishments across Scotland in 2022/23.

Providing educational opportunities in prisons across the country since the late 1990s in a number of settings, the College became the first national provider of the Learning and Skills Contract for the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) in 2017.

Since the start of the partnership, the College has supported thousands of learners in the thirteen prisons run by the SPS in Scotland.

Over the past twelve months, over 100 dedicated staff have continued to work on site, providing teaching and learning to an average of around 7,600 learners per month, across thirteen Fife College Learning Centres, helping them achieve their education goals.

Despite the challenges of the past year, including the end of the pandemic, learning center staff delivered over 155,000 hours of classroom learning. More than 2,000 learners have also received specific individual or bilateral support in literacy or numeracy over the past twelve months.

Other recent achievements of the partnership, which were recently highlighted in the 2021/22 annual Learning and Skills (SPS) report, include recognizing the efforts made by prison learning staff to find creative solutions to the challenges posed by the pandemic.

Staff won the Health and Wellbeing award at last year’s College Development Network Awards for their ‘lockdown cell learning’ initiative which saw the creation and distribution of over 32,000 health packs. learning, 400 DVDs and podcasts using cell radio and television, supporting the mental and physical health and well-being of learners.

Audrey Mitchell, Director of Learning and Skills Services (SPS) at Fife College, said:

“Fife College is proud to be the first national provider of the Learning and Skills Contract for the Scottish Prison Service.

“We are also incredibly proud of what our learners and staff have accomplished over the past year, especially given the challenging landscape of the pandemic.

“Overcoming the challenges posed by the lockdowns, with no internet provision in the on-call environments, was an important task for us.

“However, thanks to the tenacity and innovation of our prison learning teams, and with the support of the Scottish Prison Service, we have been able to implement a unique, student-centred delivery model that enables the continuation of positive learning experiences during the pandemic.

“We look forward to the sixth year of working with the Scottish Prison Service to deliver learning and skills in our Prison Learning Centres.”

Drew Jardine, SPS Learning and Employability Policy Manager, said:

“Across the SPS area, Fife College has continued to support SPS in delivering a learning offer that, at its heart, engages, supports, motivates and develops the people in our care.

“This annual report shows the breadth and depth of that support. Furthermore, it highlights what has been essential throughout the pandemic, the positive and influential relationships between the teams at Fife College, SPS and the people we care for.

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