Federal government to make inmates eligible for Pell grants

Aug 1, 2015 by

pell grants

The U.S. Department of Education today announced a pilot program that will restore educational opportunities to prisoners after they are released from incarceration.

The department will test the Second Chance Pell program to determine if providing grants for incarcerated Americans to pursue post-secondary education will eventually help them gain employment and support their families.

In 1994, Congress amended the Higher Education Act to eliminate Pell Grant eligibility for inmates in federal and state prison.

Education in prisons has helped to substantially reduce the rate of recidivism, according to the Department of Education. The department says a reduced re-incarceration rate will save taxpayers money and create safer communities.

“As the President recently noted, for the money we currently spend on prison we could provide universal pre-K for every 3- and 4-year-old in America or double the salary of every high school teacher in the country,” U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said.

The department said that when determining which institutions will be selected to participate, it will consider a strong record on student outcomes and in the administration of the Higher Education Act programs.

The deadline for post-secondary institutions to apply for the program is Sept. 31 for the 2016-17 academic year.

Source: Federal government to make inmates eligible for Pell grants | Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

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