Jail partners with Michigan Works! for education program

·2 min read

Inmates at the Hillsdale County Jail will soon be able to work toward obtaining their high school diploma while incarcerated thanks to the jail’s partnership with Michigan Works! Southeast.

Sheriff Scott Hodshire said putting an educational program in place was his last campaign promise that had yet to be fulfilled since taking office in late 2020.

Hodshire said the partnership with Michigan Works! Southeast will allow inmates who partake in the program to obtain their high school diploma from Hillsdale High School which will set them up for better career opportunities once released from jail.

“They have to commit to us that not only will they finish this course, but they need to have an idea of what they want to do when they graduate,” Hodshire said.

The program will begin in the end of February when a mobile training bus from Michigan Works! sets up outside the jail on Tuesdays and Thursdays for classes.

Hodshire said the jail has also set up a quiet room inside the facility for those in the program to work on home work when the bus is not on site.

Michigan Works! Southeast will also work with inmates enrolled in the program for possible vocational training long term and job placement once released, Hodshire said.

“We have to break the chain,” Hodshire added. “We’re seeing the children of the ones I was guarding (when I was a corrections deputy).”

The program is not costing the sheriff’s office any money outside of providing electricity to the bus when on site.

A survey of jail inmates last fall saw great feedback, Hodshire said, with many inmates interested in the program.

“We’ll have every opportunity for them to get their high school diploma,” Hodshire said.

Michigan Works! Southeast did not immediately return a call requesting comment on Thursday.

This article originally appeared on Hillsdale Daily News: Hillsdale County Jail implements Michigan Works! education program

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