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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.”

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By on July 28, 2010, 11:49 am
In category: Community Development,Education | 11 Comments »

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11 Responses to “New Direction for the GED”

  1. Nell Eckersley Says:
    July 28th, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    Thanks for writing about our new GED Compass Website. We are very excited to have it live. We will be using the nest couple of months to focus group the site so we can continue to refine it and make it as useful as possible.

    As was mentioned, the seat reservation system is currently disabled. This is because at this point in time there are no scheduled public test dates in the data base for the website. The literacy community is waiting to find out what the funding will be for GED testing. Once that is known, the tests sites will have to set up their schedules before the information can be available on the website.

    Thanks for pointing out the broken link on the Official Practice Test (OPT) section. The OPT section is another area where policy is currently up in the air regarding where the OPT will be offered. Currently GED Prep Programs are only required to offer the OPT to their enrolled students, so folks who are interested in taking the OPT have to contact the prep programs–which can most easily be done through our program locator.

    best,
    Nell Eckersley
    Project Manager, GED Compass

  2. Gail Robinson Says:
    July 30th, 2010 at 5:39 pm

    Thanks for the information!

  3. Connie Branch Says:
    August 2nd, 2010 at 1:13 pm

    Thanks for drawing attention to this issue. I wanted to point out, however, that “GED” stands for the “General Educational Development” exam and diploma, not general equivalency diploma as stated here.

  4. Douglass Rebelo Says:
    August 12th, 2010 at 8:16 am

    About the time we can make the ends meet, somebody moves the ends.

  5. Saundra Kraasch Says:
    August 12th, 2010 at 8:31 am

    Anyone who has lost track of time when using a computer knows the propensity to dream, the urge to make dreams come true and the tendency to miss lunch.

  6. new york foreclosure lawyer Says:
    November 22nd, 2010 at 5:06 pm

    I absolutely adore New York! There is a ton to do thereand the crowdsare actually a blast…

  7. The eyes of NYS ACCES Says:
    December 29th, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    Nell, I thought your salary came from ASISTS. You seem to commen t here about this work GED Compass, you tweat, facebook. Exactly wwhen does the LAC Team get that garbage software running. Ifyou were a car company you would be bankrupt. Fix the program, 1 programmer and then spread the contract funds to everyone and thier brother, wheres the product and why is everyone on staff in the contract but we all get garbage. Watchout we have a new AG. see ya at the EBT’s

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