Published on January 16th, 2016 | by Millennium Magazine Staff0
District Five adult education program expands offerings with weekend class, new location
Pictured: Adult Education student Shane Nelson reviews a lesson with his instructor.
IRMO – Adult education students in Lexington-Richland School District Five now have more options for attending classes and earning their diploma.
In addition to expanding class times at the main site at Irmo High School, District Five’s Adult Education program also has opened a Saturday class at Seven Oaks Park and created new evening classes at Chapin High School. The program serves approximately 400 students each year through its various programs. During the past three years, more than 230 residents earned high school credentials.
“We know that the two major barriers for adult education students are transportation and work schedules, so by expanding our services we are expanding opportunities to these students,” said Dr. Kathie Greer, District Five Adult Education coordinator. “The Seven Oaks location can be accessed through public transportation, and now Chapin residents will have a program located within their own community. The new weekend class and location help put the goal of obtaining a GED or high school diploma within reach for more students.”
District Five has offered an adult education program for more than 30 years. The program provides several services including: literacy assistance, ESL (English as a second language) programs, high school equivalency diplomas, WorkKeys/Career Readiness Certification, state high school diplomas, college and military entrance exam preparation, paraprofessional certification, and computer literacy training. The program is an official test center for technical college entrance exams; and last year the district’s adult education program was approved as a GI Bill educational services provider.
In addition to general programs of study, a variety of additional courses, field studies, and special workshops/events are provided throughout the year based on needs and interests. District Five Adult Education is an approved educational provider for VA, DEW, Vocational Rehabilitation, Columbia Housing Authority, WIA, DSS, Acts Metro, and Goodwill clients. The program also manages an official GED testing center, Compass Testing Center, and official Paraprofessional Testing Center. More information on the program can be found online at www.lexrich5.org or by calling 476-8230.
“There is no population more diverse than that of adult education,” Greer said. “Students served have ranged in age from 17 to 85, and many of our students have families and work while attending classes. The wide variety of times, locations and offerings we provide casts a wide net, allowing us to serve this unique group of students. At District Five Adult Education, we specialize in second chances.”
Meghan Brigham and Shane Nelson have just a few more classes before completing the program.
“I have about one and a half classes left, and if feels really good,” said Nelson who has been in the program for two years. “I’ve been working really hard, and to finally get to this point…it feels really good. I wanted to better myself, and be smarter. The teachers are excellent. They work really hard, and now I can say that I am almost done…I have bettered myself.”
Brigham started the program last summer. She said, “I wanted to get my diploma, and get on the right road. I can’t wait to finish and hopefully go to college. That’s what is next for me.”