‘Helping those serving long sentences to ‘do’ imprisonment’was the advice given to prison educational practitioners at a recent conference on dispersal prisons. Prisoners on any education courses certainly have an opportunity to ‘do’ something whilst serving those sentences. Education, moreover, presents people in prison with many challenges in the midst of the chaos of the prison. But what kind of education? This paper posits that prison education policy, too, is in its own kind of chaos – presenting the Prison Service with the dilemma of whether to drive practitioners into the teeth of ‘correctional models’or one favouring individual prisoner empowerment. Looking at the implications of these choices within the prison and beyond release for the prisoner, the article ‘breaks the silence’ in the UK on prison education.