Adult Education and Family Literacy Week is a reminder that reading, writing, and basic math remain an elusive target for 36 million adults nationwide.
According to the National Coalition for Literacy, the 36 million adults that struggle with basic academic skills also find it difficult to function effectively as workers, parents, citizens, and consumers in today's society.
Lincoln Trail College Learning Skills Center Director Rena Gower says people without a high school diploma are more than twice as likely to be unemployed, working in low-wage jobs, living in poverty, and relying on government aid programs as those with higher levels of education. She says GED graduates earn an average of $9,000 more a year than those without a high school diploma.
Gower says there's a positive impact on the community when people earn their high school equivalency. She says people with a high school diploma and above are less likely to be on government support, therefore saving states and the federal government money. For children, she says the mother's reading skill is the greatest determinant of her children's future academic success. Overall, Gower says that there's a great return on investment for adult education and literacy programs because they mean higher salaries, better job opportunities, and economic mobility for people and for society that means an increase in tax revenues, business productivity, and the decrease in public assistance.
Lincoln Trail College offers people the opportunity to receive a GED with free classes. The College offers day and evening classes. She says students that want to pursue a GED can call her at 618-544-8657 to learn more about the program.
Gower says there are many adults living in Crawford County that do not have a high school diploma for a variety of circumstances. "If you know someone that doesn't have a high school diploma, let them know that Lincoln Trail College is here to help."
She says that earning a GED can give someone a great sense of pride and accomplishment.
Students can register for the free GED classes by calling 544-8657.