This blog comes from a module leader on PRisoN Learning Together.
We now only have two face-to-face sessions remaining on our module and the experience to date has been a whirlwind. We have had to face some real challenges and work together (students and staff) to learn from them and continue to make the most of the opportunity that we have. While this blog is not about these challenges, it is important to acknowledge that running modules like this is not smooth sailing – in all honesty, how can it be? But ultimately, the outcomes we have seen in terms of the personal development of individual students has been overwhelming and we will blog about this in the future.
For this short blog, I feel it is important to highlight the ‘namelessness’ of our blog content. While it is understandable that we cannot disclose the names of our Full-Sutton based students, we decided that in order to establish a sense of equality for everyone, we too shall remain nameless – this including Leeds-based students, module leaders, facilitators and guest lecturers. When screening blogs for security purposes it has sometimes seemed a shame to anonymise them, specifically in reference to the guest lecturers who have contributed so much to the experience. However, as the module has gone on it has become almost unfair to be able to identify the good work and practice of some, while others must remain nameless despite their amazing achievements.
Those who follow this blog may very well be aware of who we are and who has contributed to the module (to date and going forward) and therefore I have felt it necessary to acknowledge the idea of ‘namelessness’ in our reporting of our experiences. In some way, albeit a very small way, the sense of being nameless through this blog helps us to understand the experience of invisibility that some of our learners may feel. We hope that though this module and the bringing together of students from the free community and those in custody, there has been an uncovering of the positive characters and academic talents that reside within our prisons and we have been privileged to witness this.