What we do

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For 30 years, PET has helped people in prison transform their lives through learning.

Working across England and Wales, we:

1. Fund courses in levels and subjects that are otherwise unavailable

2. Support people to choose courses, build connections and progress with their learning

3. Champion the life-changing power of education to prisons and policy makers

PET launched its new strategy in October 2021, setting out plans to make sure everyone in prison has access to education.

Impact

What we do makes a difference.

Research by the Ministry of Justice’s Data Lab has shown that our courses:

Reduce reoffending by 25%

Out of 100 people leaving prison, 82 PET learners lead crime-free lives in the year after leaving prison, compared to 75 in a matched group.

Increases chance of finding work by 26%

Out of 100 people leaving prison, 39 PET learners find work in the first year of release, compared to 31 in a matched group.

Through the personal accounts of people we fund, we also know that education has broader benefits. Our learners say education also has a positive impact on:

Wellbeing

(ability to cope in prison, improvements to mental health),

Human Capital

(feeling of self-worth, hope and motivation),

Social Capital

(relationships with others, including prisoners and families),

Culture

(involvement in creating a positive prison environment)

Need

There is a pressing need for our work. In recent years, conditions in prisons have deteriorated. The population has risen while staff numbers have decreased. Violence, self- harm and drug use are widespread, and more and more prisoners are spending 23 hours a day locked in their cell.

People in prison are often among the most disadvantaged in our society. Many have had damaging childhoods, have experienced mental health and addiction problems, and have suffered multiple bereavements. Most step through the prison gates with a poor and limited history of education.

Infographic of statistics. The text is as follows: 24% of prisoners have been in the care system, compared to 2% of the general population. 42% of adult prisoners have been permanently excluded from school. 47% of people in prison have no qualifications. 71%, over two-thirds of women, and 47%, nearly half of men, reported that they had a mental health issues.

*Statistics from Prison Reform Trust, Prison Factfile Winter 2021

What we do

Read about the 250 different courses we offer

Funding courses
Join the alumni network

Find out about how we're pushing for better policy and practice

Policy work
What we do

Find out about how current and former learners are shaping our work

Work with our learners

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