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Findings from a Survey of Adult Education Policies

Posted on 07/09/2012

CLASP/NCSDAE

CLASP (www) and the National Council for State Directors of Adult Education (NCSDAE (www)) have published an illuminating  report, Sinking or Swimming: Findings from a Survey of State Adult Education Tuition and Financing Policies (pdf) based on findings from a recent survey of adult education directors across the nation, authored by Marcie Foster with Lennox McLendon.

The research was conducted to help "begin the conversation about how to meet existing and emerging needs with shrinking resources…" and to help clarify key financing and tuition policies, including how programs are funded and how much money is propping up the system from all levels of government, local programs, and students themselves.

Findings of the report include:

  • Adult education services are funded by a patchwork of revenue sources—including local, state, and federal governments and tuition or fee payments by students—but the state and local share of adult education funding has declined in recent years.
  • There is enormous variation in the methods states use to distribute federal and state funding to local providers.
  • States are attempting to keep tuition and fees low for students to maintain access to services.
  • Changes to the GED┬« that include a new cost and delivery structure may increase costs to students who take the test if state funding is not available to keep it affordable.
  • In the face of expanding need and importance, our adult education system “faces monumental financial and policy challenges” that must be addressed.

Read the full report at Sinking or Swimming: Findings from a Survey of State Adult Education Tuition and Financing Policies (pdf).

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