CHAPTER 137

FORMERLY

SENATE BILL NO. 210

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLES 11 AND 14 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE ADMINISTRATION OF PRISON EDUCATION PROGRAMS.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE :

WHEREAS, on July 1, 2000 the General Assembly transferred the management of the Prison Education Program from the Department of Correction to the Department of Education; and

WHEREAS, during the summer of 2000 the Department of Correction and the Department of Education entered into a memorandum of understanding for the Department of Education to administer the Prison Education Program; and

NOW THEREFORE:

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:

Section 1. Amend §122(17), Title 14 of the Delaware Code by inserting "prison education," before the word "apprenticeship".

Section 2. Amend §6531A, Title 11 of the Delaware Code by striking the section in its entirety and replacing it with the following:

"§6531A. Education Programs.

(a) The Department of Education and the Department of Correction shall be jointly responsible for the administration of a prison education program. The Department of Correction and the Department of Education shall work collaboratively through designated agency contracts to accomplish this task.

(b) The Department of Education and the Department of Correction shall be responsible for the oversight and management of the prison education program including, academic courses leading towards a high school diploma, life skills, special education, media resource services and vocational technical courses. The Department of Education shall be responsible for the establishment of rules and regulations regarding the administration of academic and vocational programs within the prison education program. The Department of Education shall be responsible for hiring teachers to provide instruction in these programs. The Department of Education shall further supervise these employees who shall be considered employees of the Department of Education and are subject to all rules and regulations of the Department.

Employees who are assigned to the prison education program as teachers, that have remained Department of Correction employees, shall be supervised by the Department of Education. Teachers who were employees at the time this legislation is enacted, that work for the Department of Correction, shall have the right to transfer to the Department of Education each year upon notification to the Department of Education by April 15 and such transfer shall become effective July 1 of that year. Any position transfer made pursuant to this section shall become permanent.

If a remaining Department of Correction teacher position becomes vacant, the position and the associated funding shall be transferred to the Department of Education.

(c) The Department of Correction through the wardens of each facility shall be responsible for classifying offenders in and out of the prison education program, providing dedicated facilities that accommodate the educational needs, and disciplining inmates who have displayed inappropriate behavior in the prison education program. The Department of Correction shall conduct security and background checks on all potential prison education personnel and notify the Department of Education as to the results of that security check.

(d) When the Department of Education shall make prison education programs available to inmates at a correctional facility, inmates at such facility who are eligible, in accordance with rules and regulations established under subsections (b) and (c) of this section, shall be required to enroll in and attend such courses.

(e) Inmates required to participate in compulsory programs of education as established under this section shall not be eligible for parole nor shall the Department of Correction apply for a modification of sentence until successfully obtaining a high school diploma or G.E.D. Inmates refusing to participate in such programs shall be subject to such disciplinary measures as the Commissioner of Correction shall establish by regulation."

Approved July 09, 2001