New course will increase probation officers

08 September 2003

New skills: The Department of Social Development's Assoc Prof Lionel Louw with the proposal for new programmes to train probation officers.

UCT's Department of Social Development has received a R1-million grant from the national Department of Social Development to design a clutch of new programmes to train probation officers, and to boost research into probation and correctional practice.

The department will, under the care of Dr Roland Graser, draft certificate- and undergraduate-level curricula for the training of, respectively, new assistant probation officers and probation officers, as well as programmes to re-skill current probation officers. These courses will join the department's pioneering honours and master's programmes, established five years ago.

The new courses are scheduled to kick off in 2005.

The R1-million grant will also go towards the development of research and education programmes in probation and correctional practice.

According to Associate Professor Lionel Louw, the head of UCT's Department of Social Development, the R1-million award and the new courses will go a long way towards meeting the growing demand for probation officers in the public service. "This is very useful, very important money because it enables us to meet a big, emerging need in the country."

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