Prisoners seek higher learning

The number of prisoners passing their academic exams while in detention has increased dramatically in recent years, according to new figures from the prisons service (Kriminalvården).

Over the past two years the proportion of prisoners passing their exams has increased from four to 20 percent.

In 2005 only four percent of the 3,500 prisoners that studied adult education courses passed their exams or improved on previous results.

By 2007 the number of prisoners that were pursuing an education while in detention had declined to 2,900 but the proportion of successful students had improved to 20 percent, according to Dagens Nyheter.

Education at Sweden’s prisons has undergone major changes in recent years. Previously an inmate could choose between only 3 or 4 courses. Today the country’s 13,000 prisoners can choose from 110 high school courses.