Signs of progress

Many Turning Pages learners have their sights set on attaining their GED diplomas. Their reason: They can qualify for better jobs with higher pay and careers with a future.

The latest good news is that tutoring with us and through other Adult Education programs has raised the GED test passing rates to an all-time high of 77.6%.

According to Jay Ragley at the S.C. Education Department, enrollment in adult education programs has steadily declined the last 10 years due to several factors. The federal government has been emphasizing student performance, not program enrollment. The United States Department of Education is more interested in the students we serve making progress toward their education goals than how many students are served.

Since State Adult Education funds are based partially on student performance, not just head count, more adult education programs are concentrating on keeping students longer in their tutoring programs. Increased high school graduation rates and reduced dropout rates may have had an impact on the number of individuals enrolling in Adult Education.

Even though Adult Enrollment has declined, the number of individuals earning a GED diploma and the increased GED pass rate is an indicator that student performance has improved.

This does not mean we can sit back and relax.

The latest figures on functionally illiterate adults in Richland County is 12% of the total population and 10% in Lexington County. We are talking about more than 70,000 of our friends and neighbors who are reading at below sixth grade level.

If you would like to become a tutor or know someone who needs tutoring, please call us at 782-1210.

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