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Online Learning Becomes Court-Ordered Community Service 160

Posted by Soulskill
from the fighting-crime-with-knowledge dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Yahoo Finance reports that convicted criminal offenders can serve their court-ordered community service hours online by taking educational courses through Community Service Help. According to the article, there is a high correlation between criminal activity and lack of education. Who knew? 'About 40 percent of all U.S. prison inmates never finished high school, and nearly 44 percent of jail inmates did not complete high school. More current data shows that hasn't changed. In Washington, D.C., for instance, 44 percent of Department of Corrections inmates are not high school graduates. Less than 2 percent had 16 years or more of schooling.'"
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Online Learning Becomes Court-Ordered Community Service

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  • by dtmancom (925636) <gordon2NO@SPAMdtman.com> on Sunday March 11, 2012 @10:17AM (#39317657) Homepage
    I don't think they became criminals because they didn't finish high school. Perhaps they didn't finish high school because they were already inclined to become criminals. My logic is as sound as theirs.
  • Re:Uhh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TheRaven64 (641858) on Sunday March 11, 2012 @10:26AM (#39317697) Journal

    A lot of criminals commit crimes because they don't believe that they have any options. You put them in prison and they come out and still can't get a job (especially now that they have a record), so what do they do? Commit more crimes. Give them some useful skills, and they see that they do have a choice.

    A small minority are just naturally and incurably sociopathic. Most of these work in management...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11, 2012 @10:29AM (#39317713)

    It could be that there's another underlying cause that tends to make one act criminally and avoid education...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11, 2012 @10:47AM (#39317793)

    The sort of people sufficiently compliant to complete high school are the sort of people sufficiently compliant to think that we must do what we're told.

    I have excellent school and university grades (mathematics, not some wishy social science). It was a waste of fucking time. I've stopped respecting the law. I shouldn't have bothered in the first place. Maybe one day I'll end up in jail. Who cares? Most people were quicker than me and learnt this lesson earlier.

    And before you wonder, no, most people aren't locked up forever. You do your time, you make a life for yourself in jail, you come out again, do something outside jail, perhaps you get caught again.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11, 2012 @11:42AM (#39318055)

    Yes, they have a higher chance to get convicted and get longer sentences when committing the same crimes as other races. Just like men get longer sentences compared to women. Turns out getting judged by a jury of your so-called peers sucks in a world of rampant racism and sexism.

  • Re:WTF (Score:4, Insightful)

    by swillden (191260) <shawn-ds@willden.org> on Sunday March 11, 2012 @01:43PM (#39318619) Homepage Journal

    Also, kids that get in a lot of legal trouble tend not to be able to finish a high school diploma. Juvenile detention centers do teach classes, but the credits end up being so fragmented as kids jump between detention and regular school that it's difficult for them to actually fulfill the requirements -- and that assumes they don't just fail their classes anyway.

    I have personal experience with this. My daughter is very bright and capable, but suffers from a severe emotional disorder which leads her to make a lot of dumb decisions. Even though she typically does very well in school, her time in treatment centers, trouble with the law, expulsions from schools, etc., mean that she's chronically behind on credits. For example, she completed much of the first semester of Calculus this year (as a junior), but then got in trouble and ended up getting no math credit at all. She's now in a residential treatment center and taking dum-dum math because it's all they offer, but won't get any credit for it because she's already done it.

    In her case, because she's so bright, the solution will likely be to take the GED as soon as the state will let her, and she'll pass it handily. Or else I'll pay for summer school classes, or something similar. She's smart enough, and has involved parents, so she has a chance to be able to make it. Kids with similar issues but without similar advantages are really screwed. Of course, if she can't learn to manage her mental illness -- which is very, very hard to do -- she's going to be screwed, too. We try to help every way we can, but we can't live her life for her, and as she becomes an adult the consequences of bad decisions are going to become even more severe.

"Consistency requires you to be as ignorant today as you were a year ago." -- Bernard Berenson

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