Search Sheriff's Website
Information Detail

Education, Art & Acting While in Jail!!


#LASD @EBILASD Encourages Self Development Through Creativity

There is a whole lot of encouragement going on in the Los Angeles County Jail system when it comes to the incarcerated and creativity through the arts--new territory for us. We have taken a bold strategic approach to managing those who are housed within our facilities. There's no doubt education benefits not just those individuals, but also the community they rejoin upon release. And now our educational offerings include the craft of the theater.

Our staff at the Education Based Incarceration (EBI) Unit coordinated a pilot program with two non-Departmental agencies, the Art of Acting Studio's Outreach Division and Five Keys Charter School, to create an acting program for the inmates on June 18, 2015, at Twin Towers Correctional Facility (TTCF). A second workshop at TTCF and Pitchess Detention Center (PDC) followed, and a third is scheduled at both facilities for December 2015.

This exciting program forms part of the High School English curriculum at Five Keys Charter School. The 3-day course includes studying, acting and three to four hours of practice each day. These workshops allow participants to express their feelings and ideas through the craft of acting. During the program, inmates train together as a team of actors and writers. They learn and practice voice, speech, movement and other acting techniques. Participants pick a topic and, as individuals and as a group, write original material to share with other inmates within custody in a performance at the end of the workshop.

Sessions are led by world-class teachers from the Studio and a group of Ambassadorsgraduates from the professional training programs at the Art of Acting Studio and the Stella Adler Studio of Acting in New York, who participate in the class and keep other participants deeply engaged. Those inmates who complete the demanding training receive a certificate of completion, and give a performance on the last day of the course. They are also invited to participate in Outside/In a free, re-entry theater program that allows students to continue their education.

Arts education programs like this have won strong backing from the California Legislature, which "finds and declares that there is a need to include the arts in the school curriculum as a means of improving the quality of education offered in California's public schools and reinforcing basic skills, knowledge, and understanding" (CA EDUC CODE 8810). The Legislature defines types of arts appropriate for grades 7 to 12 as "visual and performing arts, including dance, music, theater, and visual arts, with emphasis upon development of aesthetic appreciation and the skills of creative expression" (CA EDUC CODE 51220).

In addition to following California school requirements and ideals, participants stated that the uplifting workshops inspired them to strive toward improving their lives.

The Educational Based Incarceration Unit provides programs that assist all incarcerated men and women reach their full potential through education, empowerment, self-esteem, creativity and self-respect in order to make them better parents, spouses and productive citizens in their communities. Educating and providing life skills to the incarcerated population will enable them to enhance and develop their quality of life and become architects of their future by presenting opportunities for spiritual, educational, and economic transformation.

Contact Information: Yael Hellman - (323) 526-5380,
EBI Stella Program Participants
EBI Stella Program Participants

Stella Instructors
Stella Instructors

Classroom Session
Classroom Session

The® website has made reasonable efforts to provide an accurate translation. However, no automated or computerized translation is perfect and is not intended to replace human or traditional translation methods. The official text is the English version of® website. If any questions arise concerning the accuracy of the information presented by the translated version of the website, please refer to the English edition of the website, which is the official version.
Los Angeles County Seal

© Copyright 2014 .  LASD. All Rights Reserved             LASD Badge and Patch are Registered Trademarks.