There’s no reason not to graduate
According to the latest U.S. Census, more than 39 million adults (16 or older) in the country do not have a high school credential and are not attending any educational program.
RESA 8 says: “Could 2013 finally be your year to finish high school? Educators hear a wide range of excuses from adults who delay an alternate high school credential. Adult Basic Education may help you change your mind and accept the challenge for 2013.”
What’s your excuse?
My brain isn’t what it used to be. Don’t believe the old idea that you lose brain cells as you age. That’s only true if you are not learning. No matter how old you are, your brain can grow new cells and connections whenever you have novel, varied, and engaging experiences. Going back to school and challenging yourself can improve your mind and keep it active.
I’m too old. People taking the GED test averaged just over 26 years of age, according to the latest report. Of the individuals who took the test and passed, 8.4 percent of successful completers were 40 years or above.
I didn’t like school. Returning to school as an adult can be a lot different than you imagine. Adult education is all about you. Teachers understand that you are someone with a lot going on. Your individual needs help decide your learning path.
I can’t afford it. Adult Basic Education classes in the State of West Virginia are free. Unlike other states, West Virginia currently pays the cost of the GED tests for state residents. This free offer may not last if the cost of the GED goes up next year. While the test is still free, can you really afford to wait?
I’m doing okay without it. Do you know that people who complete high school or the GED make more money, on average, than those who never finish? According to the latest research from GED Testing Service, an adult with a GED credential earns $3,500 more per year than someone who has not finished school.
I don’t have time. Individual needs vary, but the recommended study time for a GED is just two hours a day, five times a week. Adult learning centers in the region offer a variety of days and times to suit your busy schedule. You can even study online through distance education so you only have to visit class occasionally. (Warning: You can study by computer, but you cannot take the real GED test online. Don’t fall for gimmicks on the Internet.)
I have plenty of time. You can put this off another year, but you may want to think twice about it. The current version of the GED is scheduled to change in January 2014. When that happens, testing for an alternate high school credential may not be available on paper and would require computer skills.
I probably wouldn’t pass. Do you know that your odds of passing the GED tests are better than average because you live in West Virginia? In 2011, the nationwide success rate on the GED was about 72 percent. At the same time, more than 78 percent of West Virginians passed the GED, outpacing surrounding states. Why? Adult education teachers here help you prepare and make sure you can pass a practice test before they will okay you to sit for the real test.
I am too stressed. Some proven stress reducers include setting a definite goal, changing your perspective, establishing a social network, and distracting yourself with something challenging or creative. Returning to school can focus your attention with a purpose, taking your mind off of other things.
No, I mean really stressed. Stress comes in all shapes and sizes. Finishing an alternate high school credential, like the GED, may actually reduce some individual and family stress by offering new skills, career advancement, financial gain, better self-esteem, and a positive example for the children in the household.
I’m afraid. You are not the first person to think that returning to school as an adult is a little scary. Think about it, though. When was the last time that anyone offered you a real chance to improve your mind, your income, your spirit, and your prospects at no cost to you?
Adult Basic Education classes are available throughout the region. For more information or call 304-267-3595, extension 122.