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Wednesday, 11 November 2015

prison_practitioners_and_academics_learn_together.jpgOn Tuesday 10 November Ruth Armstrong and Amy Ludlow hosted a roundtable at the Faculty that was attended by approximately 50 prison practitioners and academics from universities across the UK. The aim of the event was to explore how universities and prisons might connect to reap the transformative potential of education through Learning Together; an initiative created by Ruth and Amy whereby students in prison and in university come together to learn with each other in the prison environment.

Learning Together builds upon the long British history of people in the criminal justice system and in universities coming together to learn. Its design and delivery is grounded in what we know from research about the individual, social and institutional self-realisations that can result from connecting with people from different walks of life through dialogical learning.

You can find out more about the day’s events by downloading our agenda and by reading Prison Watch UK’s live blog.  

On the same day, a lunchtime seminar was held as part of the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH) 'Subversive Good' series entitled 'Free me: Education as the Practice of Freedom'. The speakers were Baz Dreisinger (Prison to College Pipeline, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY), Karen Graham (Educational Sociology) and Ingrid Obsuth (Criminology)

Summary: How are security discourses shaping schools as spaces of learning and education as the ‘practice of freedom’? What are the impacts of securitisation upon social justice and inclusion? What if our prisons became hotbeds of learning and connection? Our dialogue will be led by Baz Dreisinger (founder and Academic Director of John Jay’s groundbreaking Prison-to-College Pipeline programme in New York), Ingrid Obsuth, (an expert in the socio-emotional, cognitive and biological aspects of the development and progression of delinquent and aggressive behaviour in young people) and Karen Graham (whose research focusses on the correspondence between experiences in school and in prison).

(other formats and quality levels are available via the University Streaming Media site: audio / video).

Ruth and Amy are developing a network of Learning Together partnerships and are keen to hear from anyone who might be interested in this work. Please get in touch via Or follow us on twitter @JustisTogether.