MACAE Adult, Alternative, Community Education, Integrated Education and Training Principles Guide
Adult, Alternative, and Community Education in Michigan is focused on addressing the needs of hundreds of thousands of adult and families across the State to lead successful lives rooted in education, access and opportunity. Our programs provide and array of services including: numeracy, literacy, digital literacy, work readiness, soft skills, high school equivalency, child care services, integrated education and training, and numerous wrap-around services to more than 25,000 adult learners statewide.
In addition, these programs serve some of the most marginalized in our population in Michigan. The need for adult foundational skills building is so important, particularly in uncertain economic times to help adults achieve economic stability and educational and career success. Our programs with local employers and community partners to address the need for a highly educated and skilled workforce, particularly helping those without a high school credential or a clear path to postsecondary credential.
Adult education, alternative education, community and workforce development partners can ensure that program participants have increased opportunities for success in the 21st century and are part of a pipeline to build a skilled workforce by:
How do we serve as a voice for all adult, alternative, community education and training partners across Michigan?
Adult, Alternative, and Community Education serves those most vulnerable in our community by equipping them with the educational skills, employability tools, and self-sufficiency resources necessary to lead successful and healthy lives.
How does adult education in Michigan operate?
Adult Education straddles two departments- the Michigan Department of Education and Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity. In an equitable system, this is meant to allow for the educational delivery of services to coincide with workforce training and development of an individual’s credentials as they prepare for their next step. While Adult Education provides the educational component of programming, it also relies on allies in the community (local nonprofits, educational entities, small business leaders) to help prepare participants for transition to postsecondary or credential and training opportunity.
How does this type of programming connect with other local, national and statewide educational initiatives?
Adult, alternative and community education programming supports generational family literacy. In Michigan this is important as it relates to the 3rd grade reading law. In addition, this type of programming directly correlates to statewide and national goals to have a proportionally higher number of youth and adult gain a high school credential, reducing high school drop-out rates and to have a more highly skilled workforce.
How do we strengthen the support of alternative education programming?
Alternative Education programs across the state partner with online digital learning vendors, local intermediate school districts and regional service agencies to address professionals in schools around discipline issues, homeless youth, foster youth, youth with diagnosed and undiagnosed behavior and other learning challenges, etc.
How can we continue to improve the system?
In order to build an equitable system, we would continually analyze the effectives of the regional delivery model of disbursement of adult education funds (section107) through regionals ISDs. We must continue to analyze how this impact has positively or negatively impacted the number or programs in existence across the state, the number of participants we have been able to serve year over year, and how funds are being allocated.
Additionally, to build an equitable system, we must continue to promote opportunities for education and training to be conducted concurrently. Also, we must continue to have discussions and evaluate how adult education and workforce development practitioners are working collaboratively together to address the needs of participants.
Who are the local, statewide or national partners that we engage with to support and extend the reach of adult, alternative and community education?
Adult, alternative, and community education programs are required to meet regularly with regional partners and local educational and workforce leaders. In addition, they participate in professional development and trainings offered through the Michigan Association of Community and Adult Education and the national organization, Coalition on Adult Basic Education.