It’s hard to imagine two more different places than an elite private school and California’s Soledad State Prison, which houses the state’s largest concentration of men sentenced to life behind bars.
For the past seven years, Palma School, a prep school for boys created a partnership with the Correctional Training Facility at the prison to form a reading group for inmates and high school students — bringing the two groups together to learn and develop greater understanding of one another.
But the reading group has developed into much more than an exchange of knowledge and empathy. When student Sy Green was struggling to pay the 1,200-dollar monthly tuition after both his parents suffered medical emergencies, the inmates, who the program calls “brothers in blue,” had a plan to help.
They raised over 30,000 dollars from inside the prison to create a scholarship, helping him graduate this year and attend college in San Francisco.