About Us

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Our Vision for the Future, Transforming Offenders' Lives Through Learning

The College has worked successfully with offenders both in custody and the wider community for over 27 years. We have delivered and worked in partnership, across a range of prisons and locations, to enable our students to improve their personal skills and self-belief, whilst developing the skills needed to help them settle into prison life or resettle on release. Our approach is to focus on character as much as curriculum to achieve long-term behaviour change and lasting social impact, as we work to reduce re-offending.

Currently, we deliver the Offender Learning and Skills Service in 27 prisons across the Midlands and in the South of England. We work with MTC Novo to deliver the in-custody Community Rehabilitation Services in the Thames Valley and we also deliver library services in custody.

We work with our prison service partners to develop individualised programmes of study that lead to a range of positive outcomes. To support these outcomes, we have focused on particular aspects of the service, including the expansion of our Employment Academy model, developed in partnership with employers, to deliver training that meets employers’ needs and leads to real jobs on release. Our Additional Learning Support programme also helps students achieve who may otherwise be disadvantaged for a number of learning reasons.

Our vision is for the College and learning

  • To be at the heart of the prison through a ‘one prison’ approach, where learning is an inspiring and transformational process enabling progress to employment, further learning and successful resettlement on release

  • To enable prisoners to be inspired to achieve and progress

  • To provide a range of clear and accessible learner pathways across the prison and through the gate
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Our work with learners

Our People

Meet some of the people involved in Prison Services, striving to offer the best education experience, inspire change and fighting for more.

Sally has worked in Offender Learning for 24 years, supporting learners both in custody and in the community, to develop their learning and skills, address their offending behaviour and to support them on a pathway to resettlement on and after release.

As a qualified teacher, Sally began working with learners as a lecturer in custody in 1992 at HMP Bullingdon, a large training prison in Oxfordshire. Sally soon progressed to become the Education Manager at HMP Bullingdon, before moving on to Executive Director of OLASS at MK College, responsible for delivering education and employment opportunities for offenders, both in custody and the community.

During this time, Sally has also supported the College in a range of provision including Education Training and Employment Service (ETE) programmes, Job Centre Plus (JSP) programmes, community outreach provision, European Social Fund (ESF) provision and working with people Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEETS).

Jason has worked in Offender Learning for 18 years, initially teaching carpentry to prisoners at HMP Bullingdon. He recognised quickly the impact that teaching students vocational skills had in developing their self-worth and opportunities for employment post release. He is totally committed to the rehabilitative impact of learning and has embraced a career in this sector.

Following some 20 years working in Apprenticeship programmes specialising in Logistics, Maxine moved into Offender Learning in 2006, first working as Education Manager at HMP Bullingdon and then moving on to work as a Regional Manager in the Eastern and East Midlands regions.

As the resettlement of offenders has become a key priority Maxine has taken the role of Innovation and Development and one of her proudest achievements has been the development and success of the Employment Academies which are now offering ex-offenders sustainable employment. Maxine believes that there are opportunities for all ex-offenders and key to this is the work she undertakes in curriculum planning with employers to ascertain what exactly ex-offenders need to find and keep a job.

Maxine has been involved in the Virtual Campus since its beginning and is a member of the Virtual Campus Governance Board.

Maxine is a qualified teacher, holds an MSc in Human Resource Development and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Phil has worked in Further Education for over 22 years and has held various positions at several colleges, starting out lecturing in professional construction and quickly progressed to management and senior leadership roles. He has previously been involved in setting up offender learning opportunities in Birmingham and has now joined the College in the capacity of Deputy Director responsible for the East Midlands OLASS provision.

Phil is passionate about education making a difference and transforming lives for everyone, resulting in the reduction of reoffending and a brighter future for offenders, their families and the wider community.

Lisa joined the College in 1993 as the administrator for the Education Department at HMP Woodhill. Lisa soon decided to develop her career and moved into teaching. This was the catalyst for a long career in offender learning. After qualifying as a teacher in 2004 she progressed to Deputy Education Manager and then in 2008 she became Education Manager.

In 2010, Lisa joined the Offender Learning Regional Team and was responsible for prisons in the East of England. Today she is the Deputy Director for Offender Learning with responsibility for the OLASS contract in the West Midlands. Over the years Lisa has witnessed many learners reach a potential they never thought possible and it is this and the fact that every day is different that motivates and inspires Lisa in her work.

Karen began her career in offender learning as a sessional tutor in 2001 teaching ICT to young offenders. She has progressed through various roles and has been responsible for prisons in the South Central region for the last 7 years. Her drive is supporting our staff to be the best they can possibly be to enable our learners to flourish and achieve above what they ever felt possible. Enabling learners to change not only their lives but also those people around them is at the heart of her work with offenders.

Prior to taking up a position in offender learning Saul worked in Further Education, starting out as an ESOL/English lecturer before moving into management. Before this he spent several years living in Russia, working as an English teacher and then Director of Studies. He feels that the broad exposure he has had to adult education over the last fifteen years stands him in good stead to make solid improvements in the challenging prison environment. He has quickly become passionate about the huge benefits of prison education, whether that be developing confidence in maths and English or gaining vocational skills. He is also a trained Oftsed inspector for the Further Education sector, having completed training in early 2016.

Gina Reilly has worked in Further Education at Milton Keynes College for over 15 years after several years in the motor industry and consultancy. She has managed programmes for vulnerable learners, job seekers, young people and delivered Offender Learning in the community projects for over 10 years. This has involved extensive partnership working with the Ministry of Justice, Thames Valley Community Rehabilitation Company, National Probation Service, Jobcentre Plus, Third sector organisations, Local Authorities, other regional FE colleges and ESF funding partners such as SERCO. These programmes are clearly targeted and achieve specific outcomes for participants.

Gina is committed to leading teams who can make a difference to the lives of people at a point in their lives where extra support and learning can help them achieve their personal goals and aspirations.

Our Locations

South CentralWest MidlandsEast Midlands
HMYOI AylesburyHMP BirminghamHMP Gartree
HMP BullingdonHMYOI BrinsfordHMP Leicester
HMP ColdingleyHMP/YOI Drake HallHMP Nottingham
HMP GrendonHMP FeatherstoneHMP Ranby
HMP HuntercombeHMP Foston HallHMP Stocken
HMP Isle of Wight - AlbanyHMP HewellHMP Sudbury
HMP Isle of Wight - ParkhurstHMP Long LartinHMP Whatton
HMP Spring HillHMP Oakwood
HMP WinchesterHMP Stafford
HMP WoodhillHMP/YOI Swinfen Hall
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