Advice for prisoners and staff

Our advice service is an integral element of the Access To Learning team. The Advice Manager regularly visits prisons and YOIs, often with other PET or Open University staff, to promote the opportunities available through distance learning. During these visits, we support and guide the prison staff responsible for distance learning and meet with current and potential students in custody to explain their options and to offer guidance on qualifications, learning progression and careers.

We know how difficult it can be working in prison education, and we are keen to support prison staff as much as possible. Information on the courses available can be found in our Distance Learning Course Curriculum, and on our Prison Staff Area you can find the application forms needed to request funding from PET for courses, as well as advice and guidance about the application process our guidelines and key deadlines to be aware of. To request log-in details for these pages submit a request below, or call 0203 752 5680.

If you work in a prison and feel staff or students may benefit from a visit from our Access to Learning Team, contact them now. We can run information sessions for both staff and prisoners, bring copies of our curriculum and other written materials, and answer any questions.

We also produce written materials, such as a distance learning curriculum and leaflets explaining distance learning and loans, then distribute these across the prison estate. We are currently developing interactive content for the virtual campus which will enable more prisoners to access information about the wide range of learning opportunities that we can fund.

We work closely with the distance learning course suppliers in order to ensure that courses can be delivered in a prison environment, and also to help them develop new courses that will be useful to prisoners.

When funding applications are assessed in our monthly scrutiny process, advice is often given to applicants to suggest alternative courses, for example ones that offer more widely-recognised accreditation.

Much of the advice is given from the PET offices via email, letter and telephone. Every month we respond to dozens of queries about distance learning from prisoners, the prison staff who support them, prisoners' families and other agencies.

If you have a question about learning in prison we will do our best to help, contact us now:

John Lister, Advice Manager, PET

Phone: 0203 752 5680

Post:   FREEPOST Prisoners’ Education Trust