Higher Education in Prison - Attorney David Coolidge

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Information about Higher Education in Prison - Attorney David Coolidge
News & Politics

Published on February 27, 2014

Author: davidcoolidge

Source: slideshare.net

Description

Rehabilitation is an important element of our prison system in America. If an inmate leaves his cell with the same knowledge and education with which they entered, than they are much more likely to repeat the same patterns and behaviors.

Attorney David Coolidge graduated at the top of his class from Duke University School of Law. He has extensive misdemeanor and felony criminal practice, and has also represented thousands of clients facing speeding tickets and other moving violations with The Coolidge Law Firm in Raleigh, NC. David Coolidge is also an active member of a number of the state’s legal organizations, including the North Carolina Bar Association, Wake County Bar Association, Wake County Academy of Criminal Trial Lawyers, and North Carolina Advocates for Justice.

HIGHER  EDUCATION  IN  PRISON     By  Attorney  David  Coolidge   February  24,  2014     Rehabilitation  is  an   important  element  of   our  prison  system  in   America.  If  an  inmate   leaves  his  cell  with  the   same  knowledge  and   education  with  which   they  entered,  than   they  are  much  more   likely  to  repeat  the   same  patterns  and   behaviors.     New  York  Governor   Andrew  Cuomo  has   formulated  a  plan  to  offer  college  degree  programs  in  ten  state  prisons.  Cuomo’s   efforts  come  out  of  research  and  studies  that  educated  prisoners  are  less  likely  to  go   back  to  crime  when  they  are  released.  Governor  Cuomo’s  plan  will  allow  inmates  a   chance  to  earn  an  associate  or  bachelor’s  degree  while  they  are  imprisoned.  Cuomo   argues  that  it  costs  $60,000  a  year  to  house  an  inmate  and  just  $5,000  a  year  more   to  provide  those  inmates  with  a  college  education.  Studies  show  that  40  percent  of   inmates  end  up  back  in  prison,  but  just  4  percent  go  back  to  jail  if  they  have  earned  a   college  degree.  Additionally,  in  1997  North  Carolina  did  a  study  that  found  there   was  a  5  percent  recidivism  rate  for  inmates  with  an  associate’s  degree  and  no   recidivism  for  former  inmates  who  earned  four-­‐year  degrees.  Prisons  that  have   degree  programs  have  been  found  to  have  a  less  violent  atmosphere  and  a  2004   analysis  of  prisons  across  the  country  found  that  participation  in  degree  programs   halved  the  occurrence  of  recidivism.     Governor  Cuomo’s  plan  is  not  without  skeptics.  Some  point  to  the  mainstream   education  program  and  the  lack  of  funding  for  public  schools  and  state  universities.   Others  criticize  giving  a  valuable  education  to  prisoners  that  law-­‐abiding  citizens   can’t  afford.  In  defense  of  the  plan  one  may  point  out  those  offering  inmates  a   chance  at  a  better  life  makes  it  more  likely  that  they  will  stop  being  a  burden  on   society.  Taxpayers  will  benefit  if  inmates  do  not  reenter  the  system  because  of   educational  opportunities.  The  bottom  line  is  that  we  can’t  lock  up  inmates  and   expect  their  behavior  to  change  when  they  leave  unless  there  are  some  efforts   towards  rehabilitation  and  bettering  these  people  for  the  health  of  our  society.  

    Attorney  David  Coolidge  graduated  at  the  top  of  his  class  from  Duke  University  School   of  Law.  He  has  extensive  misdemeanor  and  felony  criminal  practice,  and  has  also   represented  thousands  of  clients  facing  speeding  tickets  and  other  moving  violations   with  The  Coolidge  Law  Firm  in  Raleigh,  NC.  David  Coolidge  is  also  an  active  member  of   a  number  of  the  state’s  legal  organizations,  including  the  North  Carolina  Bar   Association,  Wake  County  Bar  Association,  Wake  County  Academy  of  Criminal  Trial   Lawyers,  and  North  Carolina  Advocates  for  Justice.    

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