Alum Pens Oped On the Value of Inmate Education

Should people serving a life term in prison be provided state-sponsored educational opportunities?  Rania Elbasiony (Law & Policy 2019) argues yes in her recent opinion piece published by Tacoma’s News Tribune.

During Winter 2019, Elbasiony interned with the Washington State Legislative Internship Program.  One day she read a letter from a constituent asking Elbasiony’s boss, Speaker of the House Frank Chopp, to reconsider Washington law prohibiting him from a state-sponsored education while in prison because he was serving a life-without-parole sentence.  Interested in investigating this more, Elbasiony read research on the effect education had on prisoner outcomes, morale, and prisoner management, and concluded that she agreed with the letter writer.  This oped explains how and why she reached that conclusion.