Before we knew BILL COSBY had been drugging and sexually abusing women, he was always lecturing lower- and middle class African Americans on education, behavior, drugs, parenting, and responsibility.

And apparently, he’s doing the same behind bars.

Cosby’s rep says he’s conducting as many as four formal LECTURES per week. He’s been doing this for three months, with up to 100 fellow inmates per lecture.

He’s encouraging them to lead by example for their kids, and stay out of prison in the future.  He’s also urging them to re-bond with their kids as soon as they get out.

Cosby works mostly with a group called “Man Up”, which is made up of inmates set for parole . . . and his lectures include tips on finding work post-prison, interviewing techniques, and staying clean.

Of course, it’s hard to know how to feel about this . . . because Cosby has been convicted of a very serious crime, and still has DOZENS of other accusers, from sexual assaults spanning DECADES.