Northern Essex Community College, Methuen and Lawrence public schools and others are sharing in state grants to pay for 5,000 adult basic education classroom seats and more than 16,000 spots for adult English learners.
During the first of five years of payments, approximately $48.2 million will be awarded in competitive grants to adult education service providers and an additional $2 million to adult education programs in state correctional institutions. Adult basic education is paid for through a combination of state and federal funds, including the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Title II.
Northern Essex Community College is set to receive $464,466, while Methuen stands to gain $569,270; Lawrence, $1.4 million; and Essex County Sheriff’s Department, $567,572. Money also is earmarked for various agencies and private schools for adult education.
“This historic level of funding to adult education service providers across the Commonwealth will open up additional seats for adult learners to gain knowledge and career skills,” said Gov. Charlie Baker. “These grants will benefit not only residents, but employers and communities across the Commonwealth.”
The Office of Adult and Community Learning Services within the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education administers the state’s no-cost public adult education system through community adult learning centers and correctional institutions across 16 local workforce development areas in the state. The office partners with adult education programs to ensure that all students have access to quality instruction, advising, job training and career pathways.
Through partnerships with community adult learning centers, English for speakers of other language providers and family literacy programs, the money will help eligible individuals obtain knowledge and skills necessary for employment and economic self-sufficiency, assist eligible individuals attain a secondary school credential and transition to postsecondary education and training, assist immigrants and other individuals who are English learners and help parents gain education and knowledge to become full partners in the educational development of their children.