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Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability

Progress Report: Corrections Education and Rehabilitative Programs Significantly Reduced, Report No. 04-59, August 2004
Full report in PDF format

  • Education and drug treatment programs help reduce inmate recidivism and improve safety at correctional facilities by reducing inmate idleness, which is a contributing factor to violence and institutional disturbances. 
  • Due to state revenue shortfalls, funding for education and rehabilitative programs has been reduced in recent years, and the department has eliminated many of its education, vocational, and substance abuse programs.  As a result, many inmates identified as needing substance abuse programs are released without receiving treatment.  Over half of inmates who did participate in programs did not complete them; one major reason for this was the termination of programs.
  • The Legislature has funded a 100-hour, transition life skills course for all released inmates, which can help reduce recidivism.  However, as currently provided through video rather than by classroom instruction, the course may not achieve the same success in reducing crime.

What were our earlier findings?

Report No. 00-23 Review of the Department of Corrections, published in December 2000.

Which Government Program Summaries contain related information?

Department of Corrections
Inmate Programs

What other OPPAGA-related materials are available?

  • Report No. 09-44 Department of Corrections Should Maximize Use of Best Practices in Inmate Rehabilitation Efforts,published in December 2009.
  • Report No. 08-16 Alternative Placements for the Correctional Education Program Would Be More Costly, published in March 2008.
  • Report No. 07-17 Higher Priority Should Be Given to Transition Services to Reduce Inmate Recidivism, published in February 2007.
  • Report No. 07-14 Corrections Rehabilitative Programs Effective, But Serve Only a Portion of the Eligible Population, published in February 2007.
  • Report No. 04-61 Progress Report: Inmate Health Care Consolidation Progressing; Privatization Requires Agency Vigilance, published in August 2004.
  • Report No. 04-60 Progress Report: Corrections Program Still Challenged by Inmate Idleness, Prison Planning, and Fleet Maintenance, published in August 2004.
  • Report No. 04-58 Progress Report: More Efficient Use of Probation Officers and Prioritization of Victim Restitution Needed, published in August 2004.
  • Report No. 03-68 Special Report: PRIDE Benefits the State But Needs to Improve Transparency in Operations, published in December 2003.

Copies of this report in print or alternate accessible format may be obtained by telephone (850/488-0021), by FAX (850/487-9213), in person, or by mail (OPPAGA Report Production, Claude Pepper Building, Room 312, 111 W. Madison St., Tallahassee, FL 32399-1475).
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