This week is National Adult Education and Family Literacy Week throughout the state of Illinois, and Lake Land College’s Adult Education and Literacy is offering various programs to serve new or returning students.
The adult education program, funded by the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB), serves adult learners as they prepare for GED tests to attain a high school equivalence certificate and transition to postsecondary training or employment. According to the U.S. Census, the number of adults with less than nine grades of education has increased by 26 percent since 2001.
New to the adult education programming this fall, is an increase in the number of days that GED classes meet at the Lake Land College extension centers. These free classes will now meet two evenings a week, instead of just one as in previous years, and there will continue to be open enrollment. Online GED training is available to students who qualify academically.
Additionally, if a student earning a GED is a parent or legal guardian of a child, the child may attend free preschool while the parents are in the GED classes at the Mattoon location. The components of this Family Literacy program include the GED classes, preschool for the child, field trips, library visits and family activities. This program is made possible by a grant from the Illinois Secretary of State’s Library Literacy Office.
Also, the program has implemented new individualized reading assessment and tutoring programs for students who need the extra help in reading, in addition to offering professional development opportunities to instructors. According to Paula Linker, director of adult education and literacy, most professional development is focused on reading and meeting the needs of the adult learner.
“We’ve implemented a new reading program in order for our students to make greater gains,” said Linker. “Our instructors will continue to attend professional development which will help students achieve their goals.”
Adult Education and Literacy also offers a chance for community members to volunteer through the Partners in Adult Literacy program. Through this initiative, students can receive help from a tutor one-on-one, and tutors are available at all Lake Land College locations.