Colorado is funding adult education

By Frank Waterous
Sometimes, receiving funding through the legislative process is about more than just the money. Sometimes, it’s about making history.

House Bill 14-1085, the “Adult Education and Literacy Act of 2014,” signed by Gov. John Hickenlooper today, makes history by providing $960,000 in state-appropriated funding for Colorado’s programs that serve low-literacy, low-skill, low-income adults. It also breaks important new ground by refocusing these programs on helping more adults move along the pathway from skills acquisition to post-secondary credential attainment and employment.

But, in fact, the bill’s signing means so much more than that.

It means that Colorado is no longer the only state in the nation that does not provide state-funded support for education and literacy programs that improve not only the lives of the adults they serve but the families of those adults as well.

It means that Colorado has joined all the other states in acknowledging that adult education and literacy programs are key public policy components in poverty reduction, educational attainment and workforce development strategies that strengthen our state and benefit us all.

It means that Colorado has taken another critical step, as we say here at the Bell, in becoming a “state of opportunity” for all Coloradans.

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