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I have another thought to go along with that... get some of these prison officials (and prisoners?) to go into schools to talk to the kids about reading

I've toyed with something similiar to this. I've thought about getting someone recently released from jail or prison to do just as you suggested. I had a young, 18 or 19, year old female who had been arrested a few times do just this. I got permission from her probation officer so that the time she spent with me in a school reading to kids would count as her community service time. The teacher of the class I took her to really enjoyed having her there as she was great with the kids.

However, the principal of that school, an elementary school, found out and said she was no longer allowed to come with me.

I would have always been with her, so I totally disagree with this, but my hands were tied and probably I didn't push it as much as I should have.

The problem as I see it with having an inmate do it would be this. Some inmates get out on work release details where they are working alongside the road or somewhere else. Always, there is an armed guard with them.

The schools allow me to go into classrooms armed as I am a police officer, I'm in uniform, I'm on duty and I'm there to read or talk to the kids.

If the armed person had to be there to "guard" the prisoner, I don't think the school would go for that.

Now, prison officials? Possibly.

Yet, I wonder.

I have trouble getting police officers I work with to do what I'm doing. I'm having trouble getting neighboring law enforcement agencies to adopt my programs.

However, I'm like a persistent black fly that you just can't get rid of. I won't give up on what I'm doing. It'll spread, just give me time.

Thanks for any and all suggestions and support.
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