On Wednesday, October 14, 2015, members of the Philadelphia Adult Literacy Alliance met at the Free Library of Philadelphia to discuss the state of adult literacy in the City of Philadelphia. This meeting marked the first Alliance meeting of FY16 and focused on the learning trends, successes, and challenges of adult learners as evidenced by the city’s myPLACE℠ system.
Following welcome remarks from Brendan Conlin, Chair of the Philadelphia Adult Alliance, Diane C. Inverso, The Mayor’s Commission on Literacy’s Interim Executive Director presented an overview of myPLACE℠ initiatives and data gathered since the program launched. This data, collected by more than 30 adult education partners, highlighted the critical need for this type of collective impact approach for increasing learner access to adult education services and enhancing the quality of education citywide.
Diane stressed the importance of having a centralized system, as well as trained staff to assess and enroll learners in courses throughout Philadelphia. “No more ‘we are full, we have to put you on the wait-list.’ Our centralized system ensures that learners receive multiple options for appropriate classes, and support from myPLACE℠ learning coaches and partners,” said Diane.
Diane also reviewed how the Student Information System is used by all participating partners to track learners’ progress. The meeting concluded with Alliance members breaking into groups to discuss why the collected data is important to demonstrate the critical need for high-quality adult education in Philadelphia. Members contributed comments to materials that will be presented to Mayor-elect Kenney’s incoming administration and Philadelphia City Council.