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Adult Education Milestone Nears
Monday, 25 October 2010

October 25--  Ten years ago, more than 15,000 adults in Toombs, Montgomery and Tattnall counties did not have a high school diploma.  Thanks to the local GED program, that number has been cut in half and the communities are on the verge of submitting applications to become "Certified Literate Communities."

Kim Taylor is the Assistant Director of Adult Education at Southeastern Technical College.  "The goal was to do it within ten years and we've actually reached our goal in nine-and-a-half years," she says.  "Seven thousand-680 (7,680) individuals in the tri-county area have either attained their GED, completed a level or met a specific education goal within this time frame," Taylor reports.

The effort, known as the Southeastern Certified Literate Community Program, expects to receive certification from the Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education early next year.  However, there's still much to be done, according to Taylor.

"About 23 percent of individuals over the age of 18 still do not have a high school diploma or GED, so it is still needed in our area.  The work is not over when we receive certification," she says.

Taylor also notes the GED program is good for the community because it provides a better educated workforce for employers, and it's a second chance for people who may have had to drop out of high school through no fault of their own.

"Lot of our older generations had to drop out because they had to go to work on the farm.  Some students drop out for health reasons.  There's just a variety of reasons.  This is an opportunity for them to finish their high school education and move forward.  It doesn't cost them anything to attend the free classes and the opportunity is just there," she says.

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