Tuesday, August 27, 2013
In an exciting partnership the new Community Resource Center – the brainchild of Louis Smith and his family – is partnering with Dorchester District Two and its Adult Education office to provide GED preparation classes at Alston Middle School.
“This is huge!” says Smith with an enormous grin. “We are so excited – they [DD2] have been great to work with.”
Smith, who wanted to get a GED component for the new resource center and to partner with DD2 in the process, approached Board of Trustees member Sam Clark.
Clark referred Smith to Julie Anne Kornahrens, director of Dorchester County Adult Education.
“Dorchester District Two is our financial agent,” said Kornahrens, explaining that adult education actually answers to the state.
“Louis and I talked and I agreed that the district would support the program and be a partnership agents for the GED component.”
“Mr. Schmenk, principal of Alston Middle School, agreed to let the program be located at Alston. So this is our newest satellite program.
Adult education classes are offered at the Adult Education Center on Boone Hill Road down from Summerville High School, at two Goodwill stores in Summerville, at the Dorchester County Detention Center, in St. George and at the Berkeley/Dorchester Vocational Rehab Center.
The newest location, however, will have what Kornahrens calls a “closed registration” when it starts.
“We will only be taking students through the new resource center to start with.”
Kornahrens says the class size is limited to 15 and that last figure she had from the resource center was that there were already 10 who had expressed interest. Registration is Wednesday, August 28, at Alston Middle School.
“We are excited about this education component,” says Kornahrens, “we are excited to have it at Alston. It shows district support, that we can utilize existing resources and supplies. This is the first time at Alston.”
Because the Community Resource Center’s focus is on the communities in Summerville District 1, the location at Alston couldn’t be more perfect, according to Smith.
“We are excited to have the opportunity to have a satellite in that community,” says Kornahrens.
It is right in the middle of the Brownsville, Robynwyn and Palmetto communities which are the main communities in the district.
“The first session will run nine weeks,” says Kornahrens, on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:30 to 8 p.m.
“At the end of the session we will reassess the skill level, on an individual basis, to see who is ready to sign up for the official GED test,” explains Kornahrens.
The nine-week class identifies each individuals strengths and weaknesses and teaches to that.
“If a person is not yet ready [to take the test] they can continue on in the next sessions,” Kornahrens explains.
“We have individual study plans for each student,” she continues.
“We can also group students by strengths and weaknesses and teach to the group’s level. And there is individual instructions as well as whole class instruction.”
“Those ready, at the end of the nine weeks, to take the GED exam will be assisted with registration for the exam,” Kornahrens explains.
The exam is given three times a month at the Adult Learning Center and costs $80. However, says Kornahrens, after the first of the year the cost is going up to more than $100. She urged anyone interested to get in to prepare and take the exam before January 1.
The GED preparation classes are run in accordance with the state adult education guidelines and taught by a certified teacher.
Anyone interested, who lives in Summerville District 1, should first contact the Community Resource Center at 116 West 2nd North Street or call it at 843-879-9508 and attend the registration night at Alston on Wednesday, August 28.