Information Officer II
Department of Information and Public Relations
Phone: (284) 468-2730
Plans for rehabilitative education at Her Majesty’s Prison (HMP) were discussed at a meeting yesterday between Minister for Education and Culture Honourable Myron V. Walwyn and Superintendent of the Prison, Mr. David Foot.
Honourable Walwyn said that plans are being drafted to ensure the education programme at the prison is aligned with the Alternative Secondary Education Programme (ASEP) and the formal education system.
Minister Walwyn said, “It is the position of the ministry to have rehabilitated prisoners, especially juveniles, successfully transitioned to the ASEP after their release.” He added, “It is important that persons who remain in our society after serving time at the prison are given the proper tools and knowledge to help them advance in society”.
A three member team has been tasked with drafting a proposal outlining pathways for education of inmates, using the Caribbean Certificate of Secondary Level Competence (CCSLC) examination. This is being done in order to create a link with ASEP for a smooth transition especially for juveniles. Members of the team are Deputy Chief Education Officer Dr. Lavon Chalwell-Brewley, Education Officer Ms. Cecily Malone and Teacher at HMP Mr. Ashford Harrigan
The Alternative Secondary Education Programme is mandatory for juveniles at the prison. There are currently four juveniles housed at the penal institution. Honourable Walwyn said he would like to see more locals volunteering with the programme which is being utilised by five of fifteen adult males who are Virgin Islanders.
Several persons in the community volunteer their expertise to train inmates in particular subject areas and skills such as mastering musical instruments, art and farming. The ministry aims to have a proper structure implemented that will allow cohesiveness between the education programme at the prison and different training initiatives.
Rehabilitative Education is high on the ministry’s agenda in relation to its responsibilities to Her Majesty’s Prison and the mandate for a rehabilitation programme. The Ministry of Education and Culture continues to address these matters in an endeavour to “Create a Culture of Excellence” in the Virgin Islands.