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Adult Education Services Department

Anchor 1

Literacy and Academic Achievement

Adult Education Staff

This program serves a range of beginning and low-intermediate ABE and ESOL students.  The goal of this program is to develop the basic English language, academic, and technology skills that will create the foundation for intradepartmental promotion. Please see impact question #1 for proposed outcomes.


ESOL classes 

In both ESOL 1 and 2, students learn the essentials of speaking, listening, reading, writing, math, and technology.


ABE classes

In both ABE 1 and 2, students learn the basics of reading, writing, math, and technology.  ABE 3 students participate in the Student Achievement in Reading (STAR) program, which remediates residual problems in alphabetic, fluency, vocabulary and comprehension.


Online learning is part of each class.  In this program the most appropriate options are teacher-moderated distance learning for beginning ESOL, IXL, Aztec, and Skills Tutor. 


Related services

Conversation Circles 

The major use of conversation circles is to provide an educational setting for ESOL students who are on a waitlist for classes.


Learning Circles 

Learning circles are offered by volunteers serving in our Student Opportunities Initiative (SOI).  The content of the circles is driven by student requests and include topics of perennial interest to our learners.  Examples range from quite simple (“How do you get a driver’s license?”) to quite complex (“How do you buy a house?”).  The learning circles are offered before and after class and during summer school.  

Program Administrator

Manny Reynoso

(617) 268-1912 ex. 231

Career Coach

Nathan Hoffman

(617) 268-1912 ex. 222

Anchor 2

College and Career Pathways

This program serves advanced ABE and intermediate to advanced ESOL students.  The goal of this program is for all students to prepare for postsecondary education and careers. 


ESOL classes

Both the ESOL 3 and ESOL 4 classes devote one of five days weekly to career planning and job seeking.  Upon completion of the ESOL curriculum, students will enroll in ASE classes.


ASE classes

These students are working toward completion of an HSE.


Online learning is part of each class.  In this program the most appropriate options are IXL, Aztec, and Skills Tutor, and in some cases, edX online courses.


In-house short-term training programs and courses

Office Skills and Technology

Customer Service

Intro to Health Careers

Tech Goes Home


Other services

Postsecondary education and career options

All students participate in the following activities:  career assessment; resume preparation;  career-specific workshops; networking and information sessions with NDEC partners in business, healthcare, hospitality, and academia.


Workforce Readiness Program

Workforce Power is a new special project within NDEC’s Workforce Development Initiative (WDI), which offers career-readiness instruction, individualized career coaching, employment-focused training programs, and job-placement and job-retention services to 500 beginning, intermediate, and advanced students in our Adult Education Services and Youth Education Services departments.   The project is led by a career coach, who will work intensively with 50 motivated students who are committed to refining academic and technological skills; developing job-readiness competence; and obtaining and retaining employment. NDEC’s team of well-trained and versatile volunteers will provide individualized mentoring for students who are most likely to benefit from this unique program element. The career coach, classroom teachers, volunteers, and workforce partners will combine their skills so that students can succeed in the extremely competitive Boston job market. 


Workforce Power is comprised of a variety of services and programs arranged in the following five tracks.


Track 1: Career Awareness and Preparation.Incorporated into many NDEC classes are elements of this track such as in-class career exploration, resume creation, and investigation of the “soft skills” desired by employers.  Enhancing our efforts and expanding our students’ exposure to the employment world are our community partners who provide job fairs, mock interviews, industry-specific panels, information sessions, and site visits.  Track 1 provides a thorough overview of the Boston job market as well as practical suggestions for step-by-step career advancement.


Track 2:  Employment Support.    Like their peers in other adult-education programs, the majority of NDEC students make the decision to return to school so that they can enter the workforce or obtain a better job.   Unfortunately, navigating a successful job search can be extraordinarily challenging for our students who typically lack family or friends equipped to offer helpful job-search guidance.  Our career coach has a proven capacity to provide the support that matches each student’s needs, whether this means finding a first job in, for example, the hospitality field or creating a time-specific benchmarked career ladder for the healthcare field. 


Track 3: Office Skills and Technology.This 40-hour course helps students develop the skills required in an entry-level position.  This course emphasizes basic skills required in the contemporary professional workplace and serves as an excellent early step for many career pathways.  Thanks to our partnership with “Tech Goes Home,” participants are invited to purchase a Chromebook for $50.  This course is very popular with NDEC students and has also attracted adults already possessing high-school diplomas and beyond.


Track 4: Customer Service.This 40-hour course prepares students for entry-level positions in customer-service settings such as banking, business, hospitality, and retail.  It also prepares students for online customer service, an area of significant growth.   


Track 5: Foundations of Healthcare Careers. This new 40-hour program provides the knowledge students need to apply for healthcare-related training programs.  Thanks to our partnership with Bunker Hill Community College Allied Health Department, we are confident that our graduates will be prepared to apply for enrollment in BHCC’s central processing, medical assistant, medical interpreting, nursing assistant, patient-care technician, and surgical technologist certificate programs. 


Though arranged somewhat in order of complexity, the tracks offer flexibility.Thus, those with limited work experience and basic skills will benefit from significant focus on Tracks 1 and 2.Conversely, those with solid work histories and strong academic and technological skills may opt to start with Track 5.

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