The U.S. Department of Education has launched a free website designed to help immigrants learn English. The site, U.S.A. Learns (www.usalearns.org), could potentially provide millions of adults with low levels of English proficiency with easily accessible and free English language training.
The Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) assisted the U.S. Department of Education in the development of the U.S.A. Learns website. SCOE previously created several widely used Web resources in adult education. The U.S. Department of Education's Office of Vocational and Adult Education, through its Division of Adult Education and Literacy, oversaw the design of U.S.A. Learns. Core funding was provided by the U.S. Department of Education.
"America's limited-English adults will now have readily available materials to improve their literacy and help them become more productive workers, better parents, engaged community members and active citizens," said Troy Justesen, Assistant Secretary for the Office of Vocational and Adult Education.
"We are proud to have helped create this worthwhile website which will teach millions of people how to improve their English language skills," said Sacramento County Superintendent of Schools David W. Gordon. "We believe that U.S.A. Learns will have a positive impact on adult literacy for our English learners."
U.S.A. Learns is an easily accessible Internet learning tool with simple directions and offering free instructional materials to teach basic English skills. It was developed primarily for immigrant adults with limited English language skills who cannot attend traditional classroom programs because of difficulty with schedules, transportation, or other barriers. The potential learner could work from home, or a public library. Learners do not need advanced computer skills to use U.S.A. Learns.
"This website is designed mainly for distance learning, away from the traditional classroom," said John Fleischman, SCOE Assistant Superintendent of Technology Services. "One of the attractions of distance learning is that it gives students the freedom to study at their own pace and at times and places convenient to their busy schedules."
The 2003 National Assessment of Adult Literacy documented that as many as 11 million adults in the U.S. are not literate in English. Currently, local and state providers have the ability to serve only approximately one million of those learners annually, prompting the need for a website of this kind to offer to adults in need of easily accessible English language training.
For more information, please contact the Office of Vocational and Adult Education at the U.S. Department of Education at (202) 245-7700 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.