Sunday, May 4, 2014

Literacy - Spanning the U.S: Ruidoso NM, Asheville NC, Huntington WV

Literacy:  Spanning the U.S.

Local, state groups create new literacy program
Service targets adults
New Mexico News: 4.30.2014

The Ruidoso Public Library, the Altrusa Club of Ruidoso and the New Mexico Coalition for Literacy have formed a collaborative team to create a new program that will provide free one-to-one tutoring for adults who want to improve their reading, writing and math skills.

"There is an urgent need for basic literacy services in Lincoln County," said Doris Wallace, Altrusa's president and program board member. "This is one critical way we can help to improve the quality of life in our community."

To administer the program, Ruidoso Public Library Director Corey Bard has hired Deborah Abingdon as the literacy coordinator for adult tutoring services. The part-time position is funded by the New Mexico Coalition for Literacy through a grant awarded to Altrusa. Abingdon will be responsible for recruiting and training volunteer tutors and for reaching out to the community to offer free help to adults who want to read better.  READ MORE!

Literacy efforts ‘impact one life at a time’
Citizen Times: 4.27.2014

Most of us take reading for granted. We pick up the morning newspaper, or a book, and go through it without thinking about the reading process. The same is true when we peruse the menu in our local restaurant.

For millions of people, however, those simple tasks are either difficult or impossible. More than 10 percent of Buncombe County’s adults are classified as illiterate. Most are among the 12 percent of Buncombe adults without a high school diploma.

In Buncombe, some of these people have the good fortune to be tutored by volunteers with the Literacy Council. Tutors meet with their charges at least two hours a week and instruct them with materials provided by the council.

“I knew all along I could do better, and now I can feel the difference in my comprehension, and my confidence in myself is getting better,” said student Elaine Young. “So many people say, ‘You can’t do this, Elaine, get somebody to do it for you,’ but over the years I’ve learned I can do anything. And I’m determined.”

Young is not one of the dropouts. “They’d tell you you were mentally retarded, and they didn’t take the time to teach me,” Young said. “I just kept making Ds all through school, and they kept on passing me.”

The same is true of Sam Williams. In his case, it was his athletic ability that got him through school. “I was pretty good at football, and they just kept passing me,” Williams said.

Why do people wind up as adult illiterates? Some may have had to drop out of school to work in order to support their families. Others may have had parents who did not value education. Still others may have had undiagnosed learning disabilities. Williams, for example, is dyslexic. He sees letters differently than do most of us.  READ MORE !

Tri-State Literacy Council works to improve adult literacy
Parthenon: 4.21.2014 by Josephine E Mendez

Imagine an adult who cannot read his or her child a bedtime story, obtain a high school diploma or even apply for a job, all because he or she is unable to read.

According to the West Virginia Department of Education, West Virginia is ranked 33rd on the lowest percentage of adults at Level 1 literacy. People at Level 1 have difficulty performing everyday tasks such as locating an intersection on a street, reading and comprehending a short newspaper article or calculating total costs on an order form.

The WVDE also reported that 19 percent of the adult living in Cabell County read at a Level 1. More than 30 years ago this problem was recognized by concerned residents who went on to form the Tri-State Literacy Council.

The TSLC is a volunteer organization whose mission is to raise the literacy levels of adults. It does so with tutors who work one-on-one with adult learners to meet each learner’s goal.

Emily Warder, director of TSLC, said some of the goals set up by the adult learners include finding employment, passing the High School Equivalency Exam and being able to read to their children or help with homework.

“A lot of the poverty and a lot of isolation in the community is due to low literacy,” Warder said. “It is a fundamental need but it can make a huge impact in someone’s life, in the family’s life and in the community. If you increase literacy you will also increase community engagement.  READ MORE !

No comments: