The Even Start Family Literacy Adult Education Program funds were eliminated for Fiscal Year 2011, so the program will be ending in June.
Francisco Barrios/Douglas Dispatch Student Francisca Salcido has been in the Adult Education program for three years. “I used to know only how to turn on the computer and now I know a lot more than that.” Next to Salcido is Nancy Potenza, Coordinator and teacher of the Adult Education Center.
And how is this affecting Douglas?
Cochise College Adult Education has a program called Family Literacy Classes which started in 1991. Unfortunately, Nancy Potenza, Coordinator for the Douglas Adult Education Center, said the program will reach its end on June 30, 2011.
She said, “We serve 20 families during the whole year, that’s our goal. The students usually have children in pre-school, kindergarten, first and second grade levels. Now due to funding cuts from state and federal grants we will be cut off thru the end of the school year.”
The program is completely free for parents, grandparents or older siblings of early childhood education children. Classes offered are English learning, interaction with other parents, computer skills learning, preparation for the GED exam and the most important aspect: participate in their child’s class to be more involved with their children’s education process.
Potenza said “Families that have low education levels or don’t speak English in their home, their children typically they don’t do very well at school, so the idea of this program is to turn that around by educating the parents; by doing this we are helping at the kids at the same time.”
The Family Literacy Program is located at 1132 12th. Street and classes meet from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. from Monday through Thursday.
For more information about the program of to contribute to the continuation of these classes people can contact the Cochise College Douglas Adult Education Center at (520) 224-2480.