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Author: Maruof
Category: News

'The Progression Sessions' Album Launch

“The Progression Sessions” – Charity album launch on May 22nd 2024 in aid of St. Vincent de Paul. An Education Service to Prisons.

The Progression Sessions Album Cover

As part of the City of Dublin ETB, the Education Service to the Prisons provides professional high-quality education and training services for learners in the seven prisons in Dublin. This contributes both to the personal development of the individual as well as to the overall social, economic and cultural development of the city (City of Dublin ETB Statement of Strategy, 2021-2025, p.30).
The Progression Unit, which provides education to enhanced prisoners offering a range of education provisions ranging from basic education level to QQI Levels 2-5, Junior Certificate/ Leaving Certificate, ECDL, MOS and Degree Level (Open University). There is a particularly strong emphasis on Literacy and Creative Arts e.g. Art, Music, Drama, Writing etc.

The work of the educational services to prisons is hosted and facilitated by the Irish Prison Service (IPS) and both the IPS and the Prison Education Service share the goal of encouraging each person to achieve their full potential (IPS Strategy, 2023-2027, p.11; City of Dublin ETB Statement of Strategy, 2021-2025, p. 31).

Over the last 30 years, teachers in the Progression Unit have worked with learners on a vast number of compositions and recordings. Now, a new concept album titled ‘The Progression Sessions’ has been produced by the teachers and learners in the Progression Unit. The artists on this album are learners who share the experience of being in custody and the 16 tracks on the album reflect a rich and diverse blend of genres and themes. The songs are about love, family, despair, joy, longing, regret, remorse, resilience, and reflect the transformational learning journeys of these enhanced prisoners. The album will be launched on 22nd May 2024 in conjunction with the “Pros and Cons Symposium” - part of a four-day conference based around music education in Prisons.

As learners have composed, performed and engineered the recordings, these multi-task projects enhance their job prospects on release, allowing learners to further their studies or potentially apply for jobs in a variety of roles within the music industry (e.g. performance, composition/songwriting, sound engineering, production, studio management, music journalism, stage management, teaching/education). As such, learners’ engagement in the making of this album, helps create pathways back into sustainable work (City of Dublin ETB Strategic Performance Agreement w/ SOLAS -2022-2024, p.10) and aligns with the IPS Strategy to ‘enhance education and pathways to employment and resettlement’ of enhanced prisoners (2023-2027. P.15) Other aims and benefits of the album include;

  • Supporting the ongoing mission of the teaching faculty at the Progression Unit to help learners to cope with their sentences.
  • As a means of harnessing and embracing the voice of the learner (City of Dublin ETB Statement of Strategy, 2021-2025) and to strengthen the learner voice’ (SPA, 2022-2024, p.18).
  • Foster a culture of innovation that promotes and supports personal growth and well-being and raises the aspirations of learners (City of Dublin ETB Statement of Strategy, 2021-2025). The album will showcase the benefits of music education in the Progression Unit of Mountjoy Campus.
  • Monies raised through the sale of online album will be donated to the charity organisation St. Vincent de Paul.
  • The live performances at album launch will showcase just some of the talent presently in place in the school and will allow learners to experience performing at a live gig.
  • It will allow learners the chance to contribute to society and ‘give back’ to those most in need.
  • The subsequent release of the album will boost morale and enhance a feeling of goodwill, which can be cathartic for learners and promote good mental health.

Click Here to buy The Progression Sessions Digital Album.

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