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The costs of putting a person in prison compared to educating them

Discussion in 'Other Hot Topics' started by Becky Stevens mom, Jun 10, 2010.

  1. Becky Stevens mom

    Becky Stevens mom Approved members

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    Ive been thinking alot about this lately as the area schools are having budget issues. Teachers and other staff are being laid off, programs are being cut, budgets are being pared down to the bare bones it seems. My thoughts have always been that I would much rather my tax dollars go to pay for a childs education then to have that child short changed and end up in a prison cell where I will still have to pay for him or her. But they will not be a contributing member of society.

    Here is a link to an article about the high price of a year in prison

    http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE5215TW20090302

    "It estimated states spent a record $51.7 billion on corrections in fiscal year 2008 and incarcerating one inmate cost them, on average, $29,000 a year. But the average annual cost of managing an offender through probation was $1,250 and through parole $2,750."

    Figures that Ive read in my state for educating a student for one school year have been anywhere from $8000-$13,000.

    If people can get a good education and a good job there will be much less chance that they will commit crimes, become addicted to drugs. They will have hope for their future instead of hopelessness.
     
  2. MikailasMom

    MikailasMom Approved members

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    Can you explain your position a little more? I personally feel that certain people are going to "offend" with or without education and I personally feel safer with them behind bars. This is also from personal experience in a sitation with one of these "offenders" that recieved probation. Especially the violent / sexually violent ones. I work everyday with people with dual diagnosises (mentally ill plus addiction) and those with just addiction issues. You would be suprised at the number of individuals that have educations and degrees that fight addiction issues. I am not however contesting the fact that a good education may help to deter it, it is not a solve all solution. It is very saddening to see education taking such a hard hit. The future generation deserves better. Just my thoughts tho:)
     
  3. Becky Stevens mom

    Becky Stevens mom Approved members

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    In my town there has been talk about closing the local high school. Its been said that the $12,000/year is too high of a price to pay for our kids to go to this school. I dont think many people are aware that our tax dollars are being spent every day to house and care for criminals in jail and that its much more costlier to send them there then to school. I agree that there are some people who will just be losers and commit crimes and end up in jail. But I personally know people that had horrible family lives but were given a chance by good teachers and they got good educations and ended up being someone. Ive also known people that have addictions or mental illness that end up in jail and no amount of education could help them.
     
  4. MikailasMom

    MikailasMom Approved members

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    I am so sorry to hear about your school! That would be absolutly devistating to your community! Where do they plan on sending these kids?
     
  5. joy orz

    joy orz Approved members

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    I totally agree with you. So sorry about the possible school closing, what a disaster!

    I worked for 12 years in human services doing job training and job development. We live in Boston and so I get to see both professionally and in my own neighborhood the effect of budget cuts.

    Every couple of years, the gang problem in the city increases, so they throw money into job development as well as other youth programming and the problem does improve drastically.

    Then, because the kids are all employed and kept busy in the summer, the youth offender stats fall, hence they cut the budget. Within six months of getting rid of job training programs, the gang problems start to escalate again. It takes about 3-5 years for it to come to a head and they increase the budget again.

    I've watched this cycle frustratingly happen three times in my history of working in the field and having "Yooots" hanging out on the corner of my own neighborhood and causing trouble.

    Each time they cut the job training budget, the following summer they have to increase the police departments budget.

    Guess what costs more? It is SOOO much cheaper to run a job training program than to hire more police.
     
  6. MissEmi

    MissEmi Approved members

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    I think that the way some teachers treat students, and often a serious lack of actual instruction is the cause of so many criminals in today's world. There are a lot of students out there that quit school because a teacher called them stupid, and their self-esteem is so low that they go find the wrong people to help them. On the other hand, there are a lot of teachers out there that really care about how kids do and life, and can help them overcome the odds and be successful.

    You're right Becky, the education dept is very often a big influence in how a person turns out.
    That's not saying that just because you didn't graduate from HS means you're GOING to become a criminal, just that school has a bigger influence than some people think.
    There was a boy in our schools this past year whose teacher couldn't stand him. She knew that he was a "bad" kid when he came into her class, and she treated him like one from the very beginning. He got an aide and moved to another class. This teacher was very gentle with him, and when he loved her and did not want to anything that wouldn't please her. That teacher totally turned the kid and his attitude around. I believe that had she not taken the time for him, his future would be very bleak.
    Education is very important.
     

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