RULE 004.00.20-070 - AR 500 Educational Services

RULE 004.00.20-070. AR 500 Educational Services


The authority of the Board of Correction to promulgate this Administrative Rule is confirmed in Act 50 of 1968 as amended; Act 279 of 1973, created the Arkansas Department of Correction School District; and Act 288 of 1985, created Riverside Vo-Tech within the Arkansas Department of Correction.


This Administrative Rule establishes the policy of the Department with respect to education and the interactions between educational services and the administration of the Department.


This Administrative Rule applies to the Board of Correction and Administration of the Department, to the administrators, instructors and support staff of all educational programs operating within the Department and to all volunteer organizations and individuals supporting the educational process within the Department, and to all inmates participating in educational programs.


A. "Educational services" refers to all programs in the Arkansas Department of Correction School District, Riverside Vo-Tech, to college courses taught on-site by any regionally accredited college or university, and to volunteer organizations and individuals who provide financial aid, tutor training, or direct instruction in coordination with an established program.

B. "Instructional space" refers to classrooms, laboratories, workshops, office spaces, and furnishings, other than instructional aids and materials.

C. "Access" refers to the general availability of educational services to all inmates, with exceptions made only when necessary for the good order and security of the institutions. Access may also be limited by the screening mechanisms of educational services on the basis of need and appropriateness of placement.

D. "School Board" refers to the Department's Board of Correction formally sitting as the School Board and having authority to approve budgets, contracts and programs for operation of the School District.


It shall be the policy of the Department to provide instructional space for the operation of approved educational programs in selected units of the Department and to allow those inmates in need of these programs access to them.


A. Each educational service will have written policies and procedures which include admission, operational and dismissal policies and maintenance of records.

B. Each educational service shall conform to all state and federal standards and requirements applicable in a correctional setting. Staff should be appropriately certified.

C. Staff of educational services shall be trained on relevant Administrative Rules and Administrative Directives of the Department and are expected to comply with them, and to support the good order and smooth operations of the institution.

D. Staff of educational services have the authority to take disciplinary action.

E. Each educational service should make its admission criteria and rules for operation available to inmates.

F. All inmates entering the Department are tested and/or interviewed as to their education level and job related skills. This information is documented and available to educators and to classification committees.

G. Inmates having academic scores or skills below a certain level set by the Board may be required to participate in educational programs.

H. Beyond minimum requirements, inmates may request participation in educational programs. Acceptance or refusal may be predicated on custody level, as defined by Administrative Directive, and need of and/or appropriateness for the program in accordance with defined standards set or approved by the Department of Education or School Board approved practice.

I. An inmate's class may be considered in the decision of the classification committee to assign an inmate to a particular program. Loss of class should not be considered an automatic barrier to educational services. However disciplinary programs, if disruptive of classes or resulting in absence due to punitive isolation or restrictions, may be considered cause for suspension or termination of educational services.

J. Programs will be evaluated at least every three years to determine whether objectives are being met. Part of this evaluation should relate to the Department of Education's Review and Certification process. Another part should relate to penological operations and goals.


Act 279 of 1983.

Act 288 of 1985.

Act 445 of 1983, 6-15-201 thru 212.

Act 751 of 1985, 12-29-304.

ACA Standards 2-4334, 2-4423, and 2-4436.

Board Approval Date:

Effective Date: 4/2/90

(Adopted by Arkansas Register Volume MMXXI Number 7, Effective 4/2/1990)

The following state regulations pages link to this page.