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Please keep Adult Education funded

Michael Ormsby
895 NW Grant Avenue
Corvallis, OR 97330

September 19, 2017

Dear Councilor Baker,

The national Adult Education and Family Literacy Week takes place on September 
25-30, 2017, and this is an excellent opportunity to show your support for this 
important work.
Adult Education serves adults, 16 years of age and older, who are no longer 
enrolled in school and who are functioning below the 12th grade  level. 
Services include teaching foundation skills in  reading, math, and English, 
coupled with college and career readiness skills that lead to employment or the 
transition to post-secondary education or certifications. Public schools, 
community colleges, libraries, and community-based organizations offer programs 
at the local level.

The demand for more educated workers continues to grow. By 2020, 65 percent of 
all jobs will require some level of postsecondary education. Yet, nearly half 
of the U.S. workforce—about 88 million of 188 million adults aged 18 to 64—has 
only a high school education or less, and/or low English proficiency. By next 
year, only 10 percent of jobs will be open to those who fail to complete high 
school and only 28 percent will be open to those with only a high-school 
diploma. Finally, according to the Georgetown University Center on Education 
and the Workforce, of the 11.6 million American jobs created since the Great 
Recession ended in late 2010, 11.5 million—99 percent—went to workers who had 
at least some post-high school education.In a recent survey, 92 percent of 
business leaders thought that U.S. workers lacked necessary skills.

Adult Education is also a smart investment because low-skilled adults are two 
times more likely to be unemployed; 3 times more likely to be in poverty; 4 
times more likely to be in poor health; and 8 times more likely to be 
incarcerated. Educating adults creates stronger communities. Higher education 
levels are correlated with lower rates of chronic diseases like diabetes and 
asthma, and a mother’s education level is the highest determinate of a child’s 
academic success. Inmate participation in adult education reduces recidivism by 
29 percent

By neglecting the adults who need services, we affect their children as well. 
Almost 60 percent of children whose parents don’t have a college education live 
in low-income families, and are less likely themselves to succeed in school and 
qualify for family-sustaining jobs. A person with a high school diploma or 
equivalent earns an average of $9,620 more per year than a non-graduate and 
adults with a high school degree were more likely to work full time and average 
20% higher earnings ($30,000), well above the poverty line for a family of 4. 
Finally, children whose parents are involved with them in family literacy 
activities score 10 points higher on standardized reading tests.  Adult 
Education and family literacy are the best available weapons against 
inter-generational low literacy.
Investing in Adult education is investing in economic growth and a growing 
middle class. We look forward to working with you and hope that you will invest 
in Adult Education because it is in an investment in lives and in our economy!

Download Adult Education Fact Sheet: 
View Educate and Elevate Success Stories: 

Michael Ormsby