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2007 Legislative Platform
 


Employers identify lack of qualified workers as the biggest barrier to economic growth in Minnesota . Nearly 400,000 Minnesotans over age 25 lack high school diplomas

Approximately 200,000 state residents are foreign born, often without basic English skills Labor shortages are growing in Minnesota The mismatch between employer needs for English-proficient, skilled workers and the available labor force is increasing. As large-scale baby boomer retirements loom, the need for replacement workers grows. When businesses cannot fill jobs, they relocate elsewhere.

ABE addresses these challenges

ABE provided English Language Learning (ELL), GED preparation, Basic Skills assistance, and Workforce education to 80,452 Minnesotans last year (a 78% increase over ten years). Students earned 6,308 GEDs in 2006. One in every 11 diplomas issued in Minnesota is through ABE. Most ABE students are in the prime working demographic of 25-44 years old.

ABE is a major player in workforce education, working actively with DEED, MNSCU, and others to formulate creative solutions to the workforce needs of employers. The state ABE office has established workforce education as its top priority.

Lack of funding limits ABE effectiveness

While ABE enrollment has increased by 70% since 1995, funding has been nearly flat for the past four years. The average hourly reimbursement rate fell 35% since 2001. The delivery system has made tremendous strides in accountability, achieving high-quality outcomes, and using resources wisely. Yet ABE waiting lists are filled with potential employees needing basic skills training, while employers lack qualified job applicants and jobs go unfilled. In response, the Governor's Workforce Development Council (GWDC) has endorsed significant increases in ABE funding.

LITERACY MINNESOTA LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES

INCREASE ADULT BASIC EDUCATION (ABE) FUNDING BY $10 MILLION

ALLOCATE 95% OF NEW FUNDING TO THE CONTACT HOURS PORTION OF THE FORMULA;

DIRECT 5% TO DEFRAY GED EXAM FEES AND SUPPORT A PILOT GED ONLINE STUDY PROGRAM

LIFT CONSORTIA GROWTH CAPS FOR ONE YEAR TO ACCOMMODATE ACTUAL GROWTH IN AREAS OF HIGH NEED

Literacy Minnesota a voice for Adult Basic Education
www.literacyminnesota.org

ABE Service Delivery: Crucial to the economic future of Minnesota

ABE builds strong families, providing skills parents need to help and support their children Educating children requires educating adults. K12 schools identify lack of parents' education as a major barrier to parental involvement. Inability to speak or read English, lack of knowledge about how to help with homework, fear of authorities, cultural beliefs - all can prevent parents from helping their children do well in school.

The very skills ABE emphasizes are those needed by parents - reading, speaking, numeracy, ability to understand American institutions. Even ABE workforce programs have a positive impact on participants' children: a study of women in several adult education and job training programs revealed that 65% of their children showed educational improvements as a result of their mothers' experiences - even when the programs did not set out to do anything except educate the mothers.

LITERACY MINNESOTA

ABE - KEY TO IMPROVING K12 OUTCOMES

Parents' involvement helps their children succeed in school. Decades of research show that family involvement is key to children's educational outcomes:

The educational level of mothers is the single biggest influence on the educational attainments of their children.

When families are involved in their children's education, children earn better grades, attend school more regularly, complete more homework, show more positive attitudes and behaviors, and graduate from high school at higher rates. As Minnesota struggles to prepare its children to compete in a global economy, ABE promises to help those most at-risk.

By assisting poorly educated adults, ABE helps insure: .Parents know how important it is to read to their children, gaining the skills to do so.

Parents are able to monitor their children's homework, assisting them when needed.

Parents understand the importance of meeting their children's teachers, learning how to become more involved with schools.

Watching their parents attend classes and master new skills demonstrates to children the importance of education.

Literacy Minnesota a voice for Adult Basic Education .


 

 

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Lyon County Government Center    607 W. Main St.    Marshall, MN 56258    (507) 537-7046

E-Mail:    Marshall Adult Education

HOME | MISSION | SCOPE AND SEQUENCE | STAFF INFORMATION |SITE SCHEDULES | TECHNOLOGY
 WORKFORCE |
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