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The Literacy Project transitions to online classes

  • A Literacy Project student works on an assignment. The organization, which ordinarily offers classes in Greenfield, Orange, Northampton and Amherst, has transitioned to online instruction as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Contributed photo

Staff Report
Published: 4/7/2020 12:44:34 PM

Though its in-person classes in Greenfield, Orange, Amherst and Northampton have stopped as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, The Literacy Project is continuing to provide education to adults seeking to obtain their HiSET (High School Equivalency Test) using online instruction.

According to a press release from The Literacy Project, the program’s students are attending classes through Zoom video conferences and doing math problems at home using Google Classroom. The Literacy Project plans to mail out math workbooks, too. Students are also doing reading and writing assignments.

“The Literacy Project is prioritizing student contact as our teachers work from home to provide educational opportunities and points of connection with our students,” said The Literacy Project’s Executive Director Judith Roberts.

Roberts noted the organization knows many of its students do not have access to computers or do not have internet. Those students are being sent packets and workbooks by mail, with instructors following up by phone.

Additionally, The Literacy Project has secured funding to give out laptops as a “scholarship” to students who cannot afford them and who are working from home.

“A generous community member has stepped forward to underwrite the purchase of laptops,” Roberts said. “This is an incredible opportunity for our students.”

In addition to providing instruction, The Literacy Project’s education and career advisors are calling students to link those who are in need with applicable resources, as well as to provide help navigating unemployment and accessing mental health counseling, the release states.

Roberts said adult education is important not just because of the knowledge the students gain, but also because of the social connections involved.

Research shows that participating in classes makes adults healthier and increases longevity,” Roberts explained. “One Literacy Project student said that meeting up with her classmates on Zoom and having homework to do is giving her purpose and also providing a much-needed distraction from the constant news reports of the virus.”

Adults ages 18 and over who are interested in joining The Literacy Project’s remote classes to work toward getting their high school equivalency diploma can email onlinelearning@literacyproject.org.


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