Local adult literacy program goes virtual to continue helping students

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An adult literacy program is adjusting to how it serves its students.

Reading Connections helps adults learn and improve basic literacy skills such as reading, writing and comprehension.

The classes are usually held face-to-face between tutors and students, but that traditional way of learning had to adjust to the coronavirus pandemic.

Reading Connections trained more than 100 tutors to continue classes online.

“Sometimes we do it three times a week, and I like it because I do not have to stop improving my language while I’m staying home, and that’s really good,” student Rawaa Abdullah said.

Executive Director Jennifer Gore says making the program available to students is even more critical during the pandemic.

“Having a tutor that assists them in knowing where to go and what to do, particularly in a time like this where people are really afraid, has become increasingly more important,” she said.

Gore says tutors have assisted students in understanding how to complete important applications, such as filing for unemployment, and they have also helped students navigate the health system.

Gore says there have been some challenges with assisting families who do not have access to technology, but the latest numbers indicate that approximately half of the students have been able to continue their work online.

“I think we’re all doing the best we can to keep piecing it together and supporting each other through this,” she said.

Gore says the silver lining is that Reading Connections plans to incorporate online learning in the future.

This adjustment has shown that it may be beneficial to reaching more people.

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