See the Imperial Facility’s One-Room Schoolhouse

It’s the one-room school house approach at the Imperial Regional Detention Facility in Calexico, California.

“So, we have one here doing HMH [high school equivalency], preparation courses for the GED, typing, ESL over there.”

Instructor Carely Garcia oversees several education programs all at the same time, in one room.

“We have to be flexible,” she says. “We have to learn how to identify the needs of everyone and try to help them.”

You see, these detainees aren’t here for long, 45 days on average. But they can spend up to an hour and 20 minutes every day learning and improving their lives. The facility has a variety of courses including GED, English as a second language, anger management and a parenting program.

“Sometimes we have people that finish their basic education here. They didn’t have the opportunity in their countries, so they get to do it here. And they can get some other skills that they can apply when they go out there to the community.”

The imperial facility actually has two, one-room schoolhouses and two instructors. Male and female students take advantage of the free education, and it makes a difference in their future.

“Better jobs, maybe they can open their own business. Maybe they can learn something new that they didn’t know before they got here. I love when I see people learning, when I see them applying what they learn. And when I see development; when I see them doing something that they like, and they didn’t know that they liked it before.”

About Imperial Regional Detention Facility

Imperial Regional Detention Facility is accredited by the American Correctional
Association—achieving over 99% compliance for both mandatory and non-mandatory
standards in its most recent audit. Other accreditations and certifications include the
National Commission on Correctional Healthcare (NCCHC).