• October 14, 2020
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Virtual Workshop With Askham Grange

13/10/20

On Tuesday we visited Sirius Academy North to trial our new virtual workshop. This involved linking up with Graham Holgate and the residents of HMP Askham Grange. We did this via Microsoft Teams, which gave the students the chance to interact with the four residents Graham had selected for that day. The new virtual workshop is being trailed in order to maintain the same unique interaction we usually create between the HMP residents and the students, despite the circumstances Covid-19 have brought us. Everyone involved thoroughly enjoyed the day and the response from Sirius Academy North seemed very positive as seen below in a brief email we received after the day from the school.

The ‘virtual’ Prison Me No Way delivered to Year 9,10 and 11 at Sirius North on Tuesday 13th October engaged our students beyond belief. The new set up of Graham and female prisoners at Askham prison accessing the room via Teams made the experience so much more intense. The honest nature of the content was refreshing to hear – why sugar coat something with such serious consequences. Given that this was a trial run I found the interaction between the physical and virtual presenters outstanding. For our Diamond pathway students to be able to interact with real prisoners and ask them questions about how their sentence had affecting them physically, mentally was a unique experience. To see the raw emotion on the prisoners faces when questioned about their babies whose childhood they were missing was the ultimate deterrent. We would welcome Prison Me No Way into our school every day of the year. Thanks to Ben. Neil, Ryan, Graham and the female prisoners.

Adam Rust

Assistant Vice Principal (Discipline for Learning)