Recently, CityBeat published an in-depth look at the state of GED education in our country…and the resulting statistics are sobering. We know from the everyday stories of our clients that not having a GED puts a person at a disadvantage for getting a job, much less earning a living wage, advancing in their field or getting into college. It puts you behind the 8-ball, so to speak.
Yet the new GED test introduced in 2014 is harder, more complex and less accessible for low-income adults than ever before. The article reviews the details behind the many changes to the test from how it’s administered (electronically-online with time constraints), more challenging questions (more essays requiring contextual critical thinking, more algebra and quadratic equations for example), rising costs and more.
There is no denying the new test is presenting problems and the statistics reviewed in the article will not bring a smile to your face:
Nationally: The numbers are shocking: In the United States, according to the GED Testing Service, 401,388 people earned a GED in 2012 and about 540,000 in 2013. As of mid-December, only about 55,000 had passed nationally in 2014. That is a 90-percent drop off from the previous year.
Locally: Data from the Ohio Department of Education shows that in Hamilton County, only 233 of the 747 people who took the GED in 2014 passed, or just 31 percent. In 2013, 1,538 of the county’s 2,388 test takers passed — 64 percent.
But why is the new test so hard? Was the last GED test just easy? Or are we asking the wrong questions? Should the GED test be used to determine a person’s readiness for college, or their ability to hold a basic job? Have we gone too far? The article puts its like this:
To put it another way, we all would agree that high school students need to know more before entering college and that sound math and language skills are part of that. But are we going to ace out a whole group of people from getting a GED because some college administrators don’t think their incoming students know enough algebra?
Read the full article here: http://citybeat.com/cincinnati/print-article-31883-print.html#
CityLink in partnership with Cincinnati Public Schools offers GED classes here at the Center as well as one-on-one tutoring through volunteers. We also recently launched a new 10-week computer literacy class in partnership with the Public Library to get adult learners up to speed on using computers and navigating the web to make online test taking like the GED, job search and filling out online applications within reach. We can’t deny that the hill is steep for many of our clients, but we believe that having company and a support system on a trek up a mountain is imperative to reach your peak.