This was a day room and is now one of 4 computer learning centers. As it now stands, if all ten computers are operating as envisioned there will be over 50,000 hours of computer learning time a year for 320 or so inmates. That will cover GED, professional programs and some college classes as well as other programs. GED students will spend half a day in education and the other half day with a computerized GED program. That means that among 320 or so inmates, 80 will be in full time GED training. However, this is only the tip of the ice berg as far as the overall program goes. Know that to the best of my knowledge there is no other program of this level for women in the country. For those of you that want a closer look you will see the ‘fish bowl’ the window.
Yep, this is hard to believe, yes there is even an office in one of the 4 dorm learning centers. If you click on the photo, you will see my leather jacket over the back of the chair. It is also a net control station for all four learning centers and yes there is a printer in the background to print out reports. There are four inmate teacher facilitators assigned to each learning center.
What you can not see in the background is space set aside for those inmates requiring special tutoring to reach a grade level for normal GED training or those hitting a road block in this or that area of knowledge. Just outside each computer learning center is a small day room with the normal TV. However, this is only the tip of the iceberg of learning as they have mandatory classes 3 three nights a week in everything from life skills, finance, life mapping, mothering, starting a business, anger management to 20 other subjects. All of those not involved in GED training as ITAs or students have normal work assignments in the compound. There is no room for drama queens in this set-up.
Make no mistake that these computer learning centers still have a way to go because all of the equipment is donated and we are still working our way through hooking up all kinds of operating systems to the network as well as who knows what other obstacles. What you see about is the ITAs getting their training in the GED software.