Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $842,851)
The King County Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention is pleased to submit this proposal in response to BJA FY 2022 Improving Reentry Education and Employment Outcomes Competitive Grant, Category 1: Improving Correctional Education. DAJD is applying as a county-level government agency. This application applies to three correctional facilities with a combined capacity of 2,178 detained adults and 129 youth. Adult education and remote learning in a jail setting will be necessarily different from a prison setting.
This 2022 grant cycle is a unique opportunity in time to maximize impact. The grant would run during the launch of county-funded tablet acquisition and a return to normal operations for the jail. DAJD seeks to temporarily surge capability to set ourselves up for long-term success. Grant funding would allow us to invest in a complementary package of technology platforms and services to increase educational and vocational programming capacity. Staff time would be invested to conduct outreach and generate content with new partners to fully utilize built capacity. The product would be a range of educational content and platforms specific to a jail environment and to the local community to enable successful reentry.
Jail presents a critical decision point in a person’s life. DAJD facilities are a potential connection point to services for a large population, with 18,268 bookings in 2020 alone. The 2021 average DAJD adult jail length of stay is 30 days, in contrast to an average Washington DOC prison length of stay of 33 months. Jail provides a stable environment and time to learn. What could adult education and programming look like tomorrow if it was tailored specifically to a jail population with a higher volume of persons served over shorter durations of contact? We believe that the minority population with more extended stays deserve robust service. Even those with a brief stay can take first steps to engage local resources after release.
The grant applicant seeks Priority Consideration 1A. The projects promote racial equity and the removal of barriers to access by communities that have been historically underserved. (1) The project increases the number of programming participants with mental health illnesses and persons with ‘maximum’ security classification who otherwise would not receive programming. (2) The project generates select content and materials in additional languages. (3) Recorded materials on tablets and the dedicated inmate channel can be accessed by persons with limited reading comprehension or visual impairments.