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Monday, May 04, 2015

District 621 prepares students of all ages for success

"Countless success stories have resulted because of Mounds View School District’s adult education programs and their impact on families." continues Sun Focus.

The Mounds View School District’s Family Learning Program helps students with young children complete their high school diploma with on-site childcare and parent education intertwined into curriculum. Pictured are student Berenice Garcia, Parent Educator Jen Kukielka, students Dyna Thong and Jessica Geving, social studies teacher Wayne Nelsen, and student Danny Williams. 
Photo:Sun Focus   

In 2014, the Area Learning Center and Adult Basic Education moved to Silver View Plaza in Mounds View to make room for the school district’s new kindergarten center at Pike Lake Education Center in New Brighton.

Adult Basic Education offers a variety of classes and programs meant to improve the education and quality of life for citizens of the community. The education center offers high school diploma classes, GED testing and preparation, transition to work or college classes, English as a Second Language classes, the Family Learning Program, and adult education information and documents. These classes are offered at no cost through the Mounds View School District.

Family Learning Program
English teacher Janice Velgersdyk began teaching in 1982 and helped found the Family Learning Program (FLP) in the early 1990s.

“We did not have a program then, but we saw a great need for it,” she said.

Velgersdyk said adults who were attending early childhood classes did not have a high school diploma, and there were no support services for parents completing their diploma through Adult Basic Educat

“Once we were able to put a whole program together, then people could actually come and utilize it, which was revolutionary,” she said.

The FLP is for parents who have a child between six weeks and 5 years of age. The program provides diploma preparation, free childcare and preschool, in-district transportation, career counseling and more. Students work toward their educational goals, and through the Early Childhood Family Education program, they and their children participate in activities and parent education discussion three days a week during the school year.

Velgersdyk said that students have gone on to become therapists, teachers, office administrators and nurses, for example, and their children have gone on to be successful in the Mounds View School District.

“I really love seeing families utilizing the program and successfully completing not only the credential, but the plan to move forward for the whole family,” she said. “That is so fun to see.”

Source: Sun Focus 

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