Literacy Council of Alaska thriving, continuing their mission of adult education, despite COVID-19

Published: Oct. 26, 2020 at 6:55 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - Education has been a challenge for many throughout the country this year, and that’s no different for those seeking their GED. The Literacy Council of Alaska has been hard at work helping people get their GED and COVID-19 has forced them to make adjustments and overcome obstacles.

“Literacy Council continues to offer services for adult students both in the GED and English as a Second Language [programs]. Certainly [it] has been a challenging several months as we’ve dealt with the pandemic but we’ve offered a lot of online classes and then a lot of classes here with small groups or one-on-one with their teachers, said Mike Kolasa, the Executive Director for the Literacy Council of Alaska. We’ve had incredible success actually, we’re leading the state right now with our GED graduates, we had an incredible graduation ceremony where we had individual families and individual students coming through one at a time. It took us eight hours but we were able to graduate twenty-five students this summer.”

Brian Davis, Literacy Council GED Program Coordinator and Head Instructor added, “We do have some limitations on what we can do, so we’ve gone away from classes and more to individual tutoring. So we have study halls, we have an open study hall from ten to three, and it’s very rough on the staff."

The atmosphere of community and support is part of what makes the Literacy Council so successful and speaks to the dedication of their students and staff.

“My instructors work through lunch every day, so I’ve been bringing them lunch which is a unique challenge but we didn’t want to change the hours because it’s working. The students are coming in, I’ve actually got a couple students that come in during their lunch break to meet with instructors so we try to meet them where they are and get a couple bites in here and there but it’s been challenging,” said Davis.

The Literacy Council of Alaska also runs Forget-me-not Books in Fairbanks. All of the proceeds from the book store go to help fund the council.

For more information about the Literacy Council of Alaska, Forget-Me-Not Books, and their adult education programs, visit their website.

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