Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White and the Illinois State Library Literacy office are proud to join the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB) and the Illinois Adult Continuing Education Association (IACEA) in celebrating National Adult Education and Family Literacy Week September 12 - 18.
The Office of the Secretary of State and Illinois State Library Literacy Office funds more than 200 grants to Illinois literacy programs serving nearly 22,000 adult learners. “I want to make sure every citizen of Illinois has access to quality literacy programs that help them reach their utmost potential and put them on a path to lifelong learning,” said Secretary White. “Our local literacy programs are among the finest in the nation. I encourage citizens wanting to enhance their literacy education to reach out to these local providers. ”
Adult Education and Family Literacy programs funded by the ICCB, and Adult Literacy Grant Programs funded by the Secretary of State and State Library Literacy Office, serve adult students who need to improve their basic literacy and math skills and/or improve their oral and written English. In addition, programs funded by the ICCB serve adult learners as they prepare for the GED tests to attain a high school equivalence certificate and transition to postsecondary education or training and employment. In Illinois, more than 1.8 million adults do not have a high school diploma and approximately 2.34 million immigrants speak a language other than English in their homes. Approximately 96 programs in Illinois receive funding from the ICCB to provide instruction to more than 122,800 adult education learners each year, and more than 30,000 individuals take the GED tests annually.
“Preparing the adult education student for transition to education and employment is very important,” says Jennifer Foster, State Director for Adult Education and GED Testing with ICCB. “With the staggering statistics in literacy, it is critical that students have the skills that will further their growth in education, for themselves and their children, as well as for greater career opportunities in the workforce.”
IACEA- the voice of adult education— is a professional adult education organization whose mission is to provide leadership, representation and advocacy for adult education and literacy practitioners in order to advance, unify and professionalize the field. IACEA works closely with the Illinois Community College Board and the State Library Literacy Office to ensure quality programming for Illinois students.