Budget conference: Correctional officers, families to get educational help

Prison guards may get a leg up from the state, assuming Gov. DeSantis doesn't veto the $1M appropriation.

Staff retention is a persistent issue in Florida prisons, but legislators hope that money to teach correctional officers and their families will bring workers in and keep them on the job.

The conference committee between the House Justice Appropriations Subcommittee and Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Criminal and Civil Justice agreed on a $1 million funding level for requests from Sen. Jim Boyd and Rep. John Snyder that would pay a third-party vendor to offer educational services.

While that’s less than the $1.9 million the Republican legislators sought, it’s a good start.

The Senate funding request extols the proposal as offering “a broad array of valuable, connected services that help (Florida Department of Corrections) employees, their spouses, and their children reach their educational goals and obtain career development growth.”

“Higher education & career coaching for FDC employees and custom test preparation for the state-wide corrections examination, General Educational Development (GED) test preparation for employees and dependents, and General Test Preparation for State Scholarship qualification” are expected to be among the offerings, which “will help attract and retain employees in a competitive market and provide opportunities for career enhancement within or even outside the Department.”

Those being educated will benefit from one-on-ones, where “coaches will help FDC Employees and their immediate family members define their education goals, make school and program/major selections, and navigate the admissions process.”

Career coaches will also play a role, both in helping people understand how to best take advantage of the offering, and helping college students in the Department “family” understand time management and “work/life/school balance.”

Heather Turnbull is the lobbyist of record for this project.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski

One comment

  • MH/Duuuval

    February 28, 2024 at 10:44 pm

    Any progress on air conditioning? That’ll cost more than a mil.

Comments are closed.


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