Susan and Group,
Working adults who know little or no English usually only want to learn the basics, but are not able to attend classes and are not really interested in getting credit or passing an exam. Some of them may want to continue with their education after a year or so, and then would sign up for "formal" classes. But in general this population just wants to learn how to speak English in order to make their lives a little easier.
And they may prefer that instruction be in their native languages, as a transition to English Only.
Therefore, for this group, an "informal" class is the best, and I think that a Drop-In center would be an ideal method to provide these classes.
And I think that funding would be available through local businesses, especially those that are part of national chains, such as Walmart, to use an example. I imagine that if a "formal adult ed center" were interested in networking, that it too would be eligible for funding provided by a joint grant.
We could compare this type of adult education to a conveyor belt, with all the adult ed providers participating in a coalition. This type of approach is inclusive, "user friendly", accessible and effective. I also believe that it is more fundable, mainly because it would receive more support from the community at large.
The first step in building such a network is to present the idea to various agencies in the community. Near to where I live there are ESL and other classes offered in a local library, community center and a church. Next week, I am going to pay a visit to each venue and present the idea of networking and...see what happens.
Wish me luck!!
Hi Paul, Thanks for sharing your idea with us here on LINCS. I absolutely wish you luck with this endeavor. Please report back on what you learn.