This report comes out of the work that we have so far achieved with the coding project. We have sent this to the Youth Justice Board, to see if they will now scale up our work. We want to stress the aspect of poor academic achievement and how a coding can help.
According to the recent Haringey local authority Cabinet document: ‘Scrutiny Review: Disproportionately within the Youth Justice system.’
The simple fact of the review is that some groups of young people (particularly males of African Caribbean background) are considerably more likely to get into trouble than others. Haringey is an ideal test case for black disproportionately given the data on education and Crime. The report give seven recommendations:
1, Interventions need to be earlier in the lives of young people
2 Too many interventions that are not Joined-up
3 Schools exclusions
4 Poor academic achievement by African Caribbean children
5 Family fragmentation within African Caribbean community
6 Mental health
The report is an excellent summary of the problem there are few imaginative solutions. We need to pick up the following isues:
‘Do we need community sentencing remedies targeted specifically towards black children so that sentencers have effective non-custodial remedies which they are more likely to use. Would this be legal?
- are there behavioural differences (eg. cultural) which lead to unconscious bias? Are white children more savvy at how to manipulate the system in their favour?
- Is diversion work not picking up black children as effectively as white children. Given that the reduction in custody numbers seems to have been greater for white children over recent years there may be something in this.’ Colin Allers
Our Innovation fund recognises that there exists a range of good practice. Too often this resides in silos or not given a strategic focus. In reality there needs to be some leadership in this space. The Arts and Sports are critical areas in supporting the complex problems that beset some black youth in the borough. Utilised strategically the arts and sports can meet the multi-level needs of many of our young people. We need to get going with this intervention, so below is a proposed pilot, which is ready to go.
An example of a possible programme that could be funded:
The Last Mile (TLM) was created to provide programs that result in successful reentry and reduce recidivism. We believe that jobs are the key to breaking the cycle of incarceration. Our mission is to provide marketable skills that lead to employment. Our in an out program provides career training in prison with mentorship and job placement upon release.
TLM began as an intensive 6-month entrepreneurship program at San Quentin, in which men learned how to tap into their passion to create a business that includes a technology component and social cause. At Demo Day in front of 350 invited guests from the business community and fellow inmates, they pitch their ideas. Many say it’s the best day of their life.
Through the process, they learn how businesses function, how to work with a team, accept criticism, gain confidence in their ability to grasp new ideas, and pivot when they are heading down the wrong path. With the help of volunteers, guest speakers, and leaders from the business community, they are introduced to the latest technology without access to the internet or hands on experience.
Since Internet access is not allowed in prison, programs are taught without connectivity. To overcome this challenge we created a proprietary programming platform that simulates a live coding experience. Imagine, software engineers who are judged by the quality of the code they develop, not by the stigma of criminality.
It is predicted that there will be a shortfall of 1 million software engineering jobs in 2020. The TLM “returned graduates” will be positioned well to leverage this opportunity and support our mission to reduce recidivism by attaining gainful employment.
So the Code 4000 idea is simple. They want to build a similarly successful programme in the UK to those already operating in the US and elsewhere. Starting with a pilot of sixteen prisoners at HMP Humber, they want to build a network of coding workshops in UK prisons, with the aim of giving people a second chance, turning their lives around, and training them in a skills set which has a high demand in the UK (and global) jobs market. - See more at: http://www.techcityuk.com/blog/2016/11/teaching-programming-prisoners/#sthash.Go4cJtZ8.dpuf
Support us in setting up the new innovation fund for coding