Last week BPI delivered 22 boxes of course material and supplies to the six prisons where we operate. Fortunately, students already had all of their course books for the semester. These new boxes included hundreds of individualized packets for students enrolled in 60 courses and writing senior projects.
The delivery was the culmination of weeks of work by the faculty who meticulously reimagined and reconfigured their courses and by BPI staff who reviewed, printed, organized, and delivered thousands of pages of material.
Across the country, COVID-19 has presented unprecedented challenges to college in prison programs and incarcerated students. We are sending a huge thank you to the BPI faculty: because of the extraordinary effort you’ve put into keeping the semester going and your willingness to develop new ways of teaching, BPI students are continuing on their academic trajectories and are able to stay academically engaged. We are proud to have such a dedicated and talented faculty.
Each individuals’ packet included:
- A letter from their Site Director
- A five-page Guidelines for Student Work describing how the rest of the semester would run, including information about grading
- Revised syllabi for each course the student is enrolled in
- Supporting material for each of those courses
- Blank lined and graph paper
- Pens and pencils
In addition to this, BPI is sending in a weekly printed newsletter to keep students updated and in communication with the college. The newsletter alerts students to happenings within BPI and the larger Bard community, and includes writing prompts and personal reflections written by staff, faculty, tutors, and alumni.
We were also able to send in seeds and supplies for students to take up spring planting in the BPI Community Gardens at Fishkill, Taconic, and Woodbourne!