The Department of Correctional Services (DCS) will see 117 inmates sitting the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) Examinations in July 2020. This year, the DCS has 93 inmates and 24 wards sitting CXC subjects such as – English Language, Mathematics, Principles of Accounts, Principles of Business, Social Studies, History, Human Social Biology, Office Administration, EDPM, Economics, English Literature and Food and Nutrition.
Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of National Security, Senator the Hon. Matthew Samuda, lauded the education programme of the DCS, while also acknowledging that additional resources are needed.
“We have a duty of care to the most vulnerable in the DCS and will continue on a pathway of transformation to ensure that all inmates and wards are given equal opportunities to become agents of change. Nonetheless, I applaud those sitting these exams for taking the first step in advancing their educational development. Despite the need for additional resources, we will continue to prevail in our efforts.”
Commissioner of Corrections, Lt. Col. (Retired) Gary Rowe, says the DCS is committed to transforming inmates for successful reintegration. “The Department of Correctional Services is committed to transforming the lives of those who come into our care and we understand that education is one of the most powerful tool we can give our inmates, ensuring they become productive citizens upon release.”
The DCS has a robust educational system divided into three categories: remedial studies, intermediate and advanced. The education programme facilitates inmates and children from the most basic literacy level to external examinations such as the CSEC Examinations.
For the past five years, the department has had an above 60 percent pass in the CSEC exams. In the 2019 sittings, the department had an overall pass rate of 66 percent with an 86 percentage pass in Mathematics; 58 per cent in English Language; 84 per cent in POB; 64 per cent in POA; 64 per cent in Human and Social Biology; and a 100 per cent pass in Economics, Geography, Family Life Management and Food and Nutrition.