New Topic: What can we learn about adult basic skills from other countries?
Our discussions in the LINCS Communities of Practice usually are about adult basic skills in the U.S., and we often ignore good practices from other countries. Yet, we can learn from what works in other countries in adult literacy, adult basic skills, adult secondary education, English language learning, family and intergenerational literacy, nonformal education, integrating technology, formative and summative assessment and, of course, reading writing, numeracy, math, science and social science education for adults. We can learn about practices that have engaged adult learners, that build social cohesion, that integrate reading, writing and numeracy, science and social studies content, and integrate each and all of these with the use of digital technology for learning and teaching.
I invite you to post in this discussion good practices in adult basic skills education that you may know of that are from other countries, perhaps that you have adopted or adapted for use in your own program, or that have been adopted or adapted by other programs in your state.
Let me begin by introducing a concept that is widespread in European countries, some African and Asian countries, and perhaps in others as well. It's often referred to as social inclusion. This is the opposite of social exclusion, that is sometimes called marginalization. One definition of inclusion, used by the World Bank, is "the process of improving the ability, opportunity, and dignity of people, disadvantaged on the basis of their identity, to take part in society." Here is a link to an article from the European Association for the Education of Adults about the role of adult literacy in building social inclusion http://www.eaea.org/en/home/news/social-inclusion-through-literacy-skills.html. It is about an award-winning adult literacy and social inclusion program in Portugal.
Are you aware of any adult basic skills programs in the U.S. whose mission, goals, or activities focus on social inclusion? If so, tell us about them.
David J. Rosen