National Skills Coalition is pleased to join partners and colleagues across the country in celebrating National Adult Education & Family Literacy (AEFL) Week from September 21-26, 2015.
Adult education services are keenly needed in the United States. Results from the OECD’s international assessment of adult skills indicate that the U.S. is home to a stunning 36 million people ages 16-64 who have limited foundational skills.
Within this group, two out of three – 24 million people – are currently employed. These individuals’ need for greater English language, reading, and math skills is important not only for themselves and their families, but for their employers and communities.
High Demand for Adult Education
Many people who have foundational skills needs would like to participate in adult education: the OECD report found that 3 million American adults would like to enroll for the first time, and 6 million who have already participated in adult education would like to participate more.
Limited Seats Available; New Focus on Connection to Work
But federal funding has not kept pace with the need: the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) serves approximately 1.6 million individuals a year, and funding levels are significantly lower than a decade ago.
Nevertheless, WIOA is breaking new ground in integrating adult education and occupational training, creating common performance measures across programs, and improving the quality of education and training services.
In recognition of the vital role that adult education plays in American communities, National Skills Coalition is sharing recent resources on adult education policy and implementation. Please see below.
- Why invest in foundational skills? Our two-page fact sheet for policymakersexplains.
- WIOA and Adult Education: A webinar for the Literacy Funders Network. View slides and listen to the recording.
- Aligned by Design webinars and fact sheets highlight important considerations in aligning core programs under WIOA. View our Adult Education two-pager on alignment, and check out the full series of materials.
- WIOA Implementation: What Practitioners Need to Know. View slides from this webinar, presented in collaboration with the Commission on Adult Basic Education.
Want to know more about Adult Education and Family Literacy Week? Check out the National Coalition for Literacy AEFL page and the Commission on Adult Basic Education AEFL page, and join the conversation on social media at #AEFLWeek.