The L.I.F.E Program
ABC Literacy and L.I.F.E
ABC Literacy Resources has been working with the L.I.F.E (Learning Is For Everyone).
program at the New Jersey State Prison since 1998. The LIFE Program has been
indefinitely suspended at New Jersey State Prison in Trenton NJ. ABC Prison Literacy
to date has been unable to obtain an explanation for this action.
"L.I.F.E. is a literacy program within the walls of the New Jersey State Prison. We have used one-to-one tutoring to teach over 230 students to read and write. For the past five years we have received assistance from the professionals of ABC Prison Literacy. Using their effective multi-sensory learning strategies, ABC’s instructors have worked closely with our tutors. In many cases, they have provided us with invaluable solutions where our usual methods had proven ineffective."-- L.I.F.E. Manager
One of the unique aspects of the L.I.F.E.. Program is its recognition of learning disabilities among its students. The American prison population has a four times greater percentage of learning-disabled individuals than the general population. Although Learning Volunteers of America train the inmate-tutors with skills needed for reading instruction, a more specialized training using multisensory strategies is needed to teach the learning-disabled student. Volunteers from ABC Literacy Resources conduct additional tutor-training sessions to help them identify strengths and deficiencies in their students and to become skilled teachers of the Orton Gillingham-based instruction. Elaine Phillips, one of the founders of ABC Literacy Resources, states:
"With such disproportionately high numbers of inmates with learning disabilities such as dyslexia, it is vital that we give these inmate tutors the skills to recognize the impediments affecting their students learning."