Gov. Reynolds proclaims Sept. 24-30 Iowa Adult Education and Family Literacy Week
Increasing the number of Iowans with credentials needed for in-demand jobs is key to Future Ready Iowa success
DES MOINES – Today, Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a proclamation recognizing Sept. 24 – 30 as Iowa Adult Education and Family Literacy Week.
The week, which coincides with the National Adult Education and Literacy Week, shines a light on the work Iowa’s adult education and literacy programs do in helping Iowans achieve the skills and training needed for college and careers.
According to the National Coalition for Literacy, more than 36 million adults struggle with basic literacy and 60 million lack basic math skills. Additionally, data from the Future Ready Iowa Metrics that Matter report indicate that Iowans who lack education or training beyond high school are more likely to be unemployed, working low-wage jobs, and living in poverty than those with higher levels of education. Currently, more than 171,000 adults across the state lack high school diplomas.
The state’s 15 regional adult education and literacy programs, which are overseen by the Iowa Department of Education, address these disparities by providing non-credit instruction in adult basic education, adult secondary education, English as a second language, and other training to help adult learners improve their education and skill levels to meet employer demands and secure living-wage jobs. These opportunities are also integral to the Future Ready Iowa initiative, which calls for 70 percent of Iowans to have education or training beyond high school by 2025.
“Iowa’s adult education and literacy programs are life-changing for the nearly 18,000 students who are served each year,” Iowa Department of Education Director Ryan Wise said. “Many of these adults face significant barriers to employment. Our programs and partners provide the extra support they need to gain the education and skills necessary to succeed in college and careers.”
The federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which was passed in 2014, requires states to seamlessly deliver integrated job-driven services, including postsecondary education and training, to help those with significant barriers to employment earn marketable credentials to secure high-quality jobs and careers.
For more information, visit the Iowa Department of Education's Adult Education and Literacy webpage. In addition, the Your Future Starts Here website features student success stories and provides resources to help Iowans start the path to earning high school equivalency diplomas, head to college, or launch their careers.