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Education Programs

Fostering a Commitment to Lifelong Learning

The mission of the Education & Training unit is to provide educational opportunities to inmates with the goal of reducing recidivism. The opportunities listed below are just a small part of all education programs offered at our facilities.

For more information regarding educational opportunities, please contact your inmate's institution.

Programs

The English as a Second Language (ESL) program targets inmates who are non-native English speakers with little to no English skills. The program focuses on improving English language skills such as listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

The Functional Literacy program targets inmates with very limited functional skills and/or limited English language development. It is designed to develop reading, writing, computing, communicating, problem solving, and others skills deemed necessary to function in a work setting.​

The General Education Development (GED) course is a continuation of the functional literacy program where inmates who have not received a high school degree can earn their GED certificate. Participating inmates take five exams demonstrating satisfactory skill achievement in writing, social studies, science, literature and the arts, and math. Upon successful completion, the student will have earned their GED certificate.​

Special Education is a supplemental program for inmates with disabilities. Students of the program are assessed to determine specific program needs and special accommodations for testing, jobs, and independent living. Students are referred for special assessment according to previous test results, self-referral, staff/teacher recommendation, and special education history.​

The Oregon Department of Corrections has partnered with various community colleges around the state, with the goal of having local colleges facilitate some, or all, of the above educational programs offered in the Oregon Department of Corrections. Furthermore, inmates who are eligible to take college-level courses may do so at their own expense when the opportunity is available. Community partners include:

  • Blue Mountain Community College
  • Central Oregon Community College
  • Chemeketa Community College
  • Portland Community College
  • Southwestern Oregon Community College
  • Treasure Valley Community College

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