The Education Division

The Department offers a variety of educational programs to help inmates and detainees build academic and life skills that better prepare them to become productive members of society as they reenter their neighborhoods. To help sustain its programs, the Department partners with agencies like local colleges, city departments, and non-profit organizations.


Adult Basic Education

All sentenced individuals, detainees at the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department will be offered adult basic education classes. Each sentenced individual will be tested to assess their literacy level and then offered classes based on the results of the Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE) exam.

English as a Second Language (ESL): This program assists non-native English speakers as they practice basic language structures and conversation skills. Within this course, participants will develop their writing ability, reading fluency, vocabulary and much more.

Literacy 1: This course is designed to successfully develop reading, spelling, and writing strategies for participants who read at or less than a fifth grade level.

Literacy 2: This class assists participants in improving their skills in reading comprehension, basic arithmetic, and essay writing.

High School Equivalency Test (HiSET): Individuals taking the HiSET exam will receive high school-level instruction in all subjects covered on the exam. The exam will be at the Suffolk County House of Correction on a regular basis at no cost to the participants.

Special Education: Special Education classes are available for individuals under the age of 22 who have been diagnosed with learning disabilities and had an Individualized Education Program (IEP) while enrolled in public schools.


Educational Support

Financial Literacy: Participants learn how to make sensible financial decisions, manage money and credit, as well as negotiate any financial opportunities and/or problems they may encounter.

Tutoring: Tutoring sessions are available through programs provided by Boston College students.

Civics: This class teaches the basics of civic engagement and participation in our government. The course will cover current election cycles and the basics of state, federal and city government.

Library: Our library staff teaches an assortment of enrichment classes throughout the year. Some of the offerings include Book Club, Film Class, Chess Club, Debating, and TV Club.

Educational Counseling: Educational advising is available through a variety of counselors. Participants receive assistance with college applications, financial aid, references, and testing in order to assist their transition to post-secondary education.


Post-Secondary Education

College Prep Pathways Transitional program to equip high school graduates with the attitude, skills, and experience to apply to and successfully graduate from college.

Inside-Out Model: Perspectives on Crime, Corrections, & Justice Course

This Inside-Out course is an opportunity for a group of students from a local university and the Suffolk County House of Correction to exchange ideas and perceptions about crime, corrections and justice. It is a chance for all participants to gain a deeper understanding of the United States criminal justice system through the integration of theoretical knowledge and practical experience achieved in meetings throughout a semester. Topics include causes and definitions of crime, criminal justice institutions, myths and realities of prison life, experiences of crime victims, theories of punishment and rehabilitation, and the relationship between crime and community.

Various College Level Classes: Various local universities and colleges offer college level classes for either credit or certificate of completion/participation. Courses offered may cover literature, writing, philosophy, government, history, psychology, sociology or computer science.