New Direction for the GED
July 28th, 2010
Nationwide, more than seven out of 10 people who take the test to receive a high school equivalency degree pass. In New York City less than half do. Experts cite a variety of reasons s, including a confused and chaotic systems for preparing for and taking the test to receive the state’s General Equivalency Diploma. (For more, see Poor Preparation, Confusion Lead Many to Fail GED Test.
Yesterday the City Council, city agencies and the New York Community Trust announced efforts to change that — and boost New York’s pass rate. A new website, GED Compass, is aimed at providing people with information on how to prepare for the test and where and when they can take it. A program locator, for example, allows people to type in their ZIP code and the type of course they need to get a list of appropriate and convenient classes. The site also offers lots of basic information such as the length of the test — a taxing seven hours — and the various sections in the exam.
Other sections still seem to be works in progress. At 11:15 a.m. today, for example, the seat reservation system that allows registered users to sign up for the test was “currently disabled.” And the section on the official practice test simply refers visitors to a program locator (with the link missing this morning).
“We believe this GED Compass is a great tool that allows the City to make the best use of its resources and reach that vulnerable group of New Yorkers who want to acquire the GED to gain entry to the labor market, secure a better job or pursue higher education opportunities,” said Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott in the press release.
In her 2010 State of the City speech last winter, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn had called for a number of changes to what she has described as a “broken” GED system. The new website is part of that.
The statement yesterday said GED Compass is part of a three-tier plan what will also try using city Workforce 1 Career Centers to connect people with high school diplomas with GED programs and work to encourage more people to prepare for and take a practice test prior to sitting down to the real GED exam
“Anyone who’s been caught in the mess that is the current GED system knows that it feels just like being lost in the woods without a compass,” Quinn said in the release. The new website, she added, will “help provide much needed direction.”
.By Gail Robinson on July 28, 2010, 11:49 am
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