Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $899,997)
Eastern Suffolk BOCES (ESBOCES) will improve educational, vocational, and transitional programs for inmates in the Suffolk County Correctional Facilities (SCCF) and upon return to the community.
ESBOCES is a not-for-profit educational cooperative of 51 school districts that provides educational leadership, direct instruction, management, and support through quality, instructional programs and shared services. These programs and services maximize educational and career opportunities for Long Island's diverse community of lifelong learners. Since 1975, ESBOCES has been instrumental in the development and implementation of curriculum-based educational, vocational and transitional programs for incarcerated individuals.
Purpose: The program will expand current jail-based educational and vocational programs to improve educational outcomes, as measured by literacy attainment, high school equivalency, certifications, and credentials in an effort to reduce recidivism and enhance reentry success.
Service Area: The SCCF in Yaphank and Riverhead house inmates of all three security classifications. With a daily inmate population of over 800 inmates, the SCCF are the largest county correctional systems in NY State outside of New York City.
Primary Activities: Create a career-pathway system connecting educational, vocational and support services enabling participants to secure post-release employment. ESBOCES has developed a comprehensive contextualized program where students will obtain high school equivalency, focus on a career, obtain stackable credentials, certification, and transition into employment. Career offerings align with work opportunities available to inmates within the correctional facilities including Construction Trades, Hospitality/Food Service, Facilities Maintenance, and Transportation.
The ESBOCES Recently Released Offenders Under Training is a comprehensive program to assist inmates with transition and reentry into society. Available support services include counseling, transition planning, resume preparation, job search assistance, stress reduction, anger management and cognitive behavioral intervention programs. Under this proposal, the program will be expanded to better serve the needs of program participants.
Beneficiaries: Participants will be inmates sentenced to county time in the SCCF who will return to the community when their sentence ends. This allows for concrete planning for transition and services in the jail and upon release.
Expected Outcomes: Expected outcomes include reducing recidivism, providing offenders opportunities to support themselves through legitimate and productive work, improving public safety, and enhancing the quality of life of participants and their families.
The proposal will be developed in accordance with OJP Priority Area 1A. This information can be found of page 14 of the narrative.