2001 Grant Recipients
New York State Librarian and Assistant Commissioner for Libraries Janet M. Welch announced that the State Library's Division of Library Development has awarded Adult Literacy Library Services Grants totaling $200,000 to eight public libraries and six public library systems. The 14 projects have already begun and will end June 30, 2002.
Janet M. Welch said, "These grants are an important part of implementing the recommendations of the Regents Commission on Library Services for more literacy programs and services for adults and families. They are a small step in the right direction and have set the foundation for further funding from the "New Century Libraries" bill currently before the Legislature."
Grant funds from the State Education Department will enable adults who read below the sixth grade level or who are learning English as a second language, to take part in library activities to improve their reading and conversation skills. This year's programs include literacy and reading programs for inmates and their families; tutor training, computer and literacy workshops for English as a Second Language (ESL) students; computer training and English literacy classes for high-school drop-outs as they prepare for the GED exam; and materials including a web site for learning disabled students.
Anne E. Simon, the State Library's program officer for youth services and adult literacy, said "We feel that the Adult Literacy Services Grants are among the most important programs having an impact on the problem of illiteracy. Because they support not only adults, but their families as well, they help to break the cycle of illiteracy by involving adults in literacy activities with their children and encouraging parents to seek educational services and give themselves another chance at learning."
Library Development staff and outside specialists reviewed 31 applications seeking funds totaling $493,783. The following is a list of public libraries and public library systems that received Adult Literacy Service Grant awards.
Brooklyn Public Library (Kings County) $6,699 - Family Reading Room of the Brooklyn House of Detention and Pre-GED Program of Flatbush Learning Center.
Grant funds will enhance the Family Reading Room program and provide a comfortable place for parents and children to read together during visits in the Brooklyn House of Detention. Books, magazines, educational software and toys will be available to provide family literacy experiences and to encourage the literacy efforts of incarcerated men. The Flatbush Learning Center will receive some new learning materials in support of its pre-GED (General Equivalency Diploma) program.
Freeport Memorial Library (Nassau County) $5,573 - Getting Ready for the 2002 GED.
This program will enable 16 - 18-year-old high school dropouts to prepare for the GED exam using a computer-based GED interactive program designed to meet the unique needs of the age group.
Guilderland Public Library (Albany County) $12,623 - New Connections @ the Guilderland Public Library: Linking ESL Students and Tutors.
The Library, in cooperation with Literacy Volunteers-Mohawk Hudson, will recruit and train tutors. The goal is to reduce long waiting lists for English as a Second Language (ESL) and literacy classes.
Hempstead Public Library (Nassau County) $19,450 - The New Write to Work.
Hempstead Public Library will help 100 students prepare for the new 2002 GED exam. Teachers, software, laptop computers and books for classes in writing and computer literacy will be provided.
Howland Public Library (Dutchess) $11,750 - Beacon Reads!
English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and literacy programs will be advertised to members of the growing Latino population in the Beacon City School District. Tutors will be recruited and trained and an awareness campaign will be conducted to increase the community's knowledge of the need for literacy and ESOL services in Beacon as well as locations for assistance.
Huntington Public Library (Suffolk County) $11,291 - ESOL Language Lab.
A shortage of ESOL and basic literacy tutors will be addressed by the Huntington Public Library in cooperation with the Literacy Volunteers of America-Suffolk County. A computer self-study program to learn the English language will be made available. Tutors and library staff will be trained to assist students in literacy study even before a tutor is available to them.
Mohawk Valley Library Association (Fulton, Montgomery, Schenectady and Schoharie Counties) $15,387 - Learning Styles Toolkits.
Toolkits created by the Mohawk Valley Library Association will help public library staff, correctional facility educators, and volunteers work with learning disabled literacy students. MVLA's literacy web site (http://www.mvla.org/outreach/learnenglish.html ) will be strengthened to create better access for those with alternative learning needs. The toolkits will make it possible to work with people in a number of different ways including vision, hearing, touch and movement, print, and through personal interaction.
Monroe County Library System (Monroe County) $20,000 - Literacy and Learning Disabilities Project.
The Monroe County Library System will also be working with adults with learning disabilities. This project will focus on: 1) Greater awareness among those most in need, 2) Workshops to make tutors and staff better able to help, and 3) Better collections of books, software, and nonprint format materials in public libraries.
The New York Public Library, The Branch Libraries (New York, Bronx, Richmond Counties) $20,000 - ESOL Classes at Inwood Regional Branch Library
Evening classes of English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) will be offered at a branch library that serves a community of Spanish-speaking immigrants from the Dominican Republic as well as Russian and Asian immigrants. Six classes, ten sessions each, will be offered during the year through the Riverside Language Program.
North Country Library System (Jefferson, Lewis, Oswego, St. Lawrence Counties) $15,120 - Come Read With Me.
Children whose fathers are incarcerated in the area's eight State correctional facilities and county jails will have the opportunity to read with fathers and other family members during visits. These same inmates will learn to read or improve their literacy level between visits using the same books they will later read with their youngsters.
Oneida Public Library (Madison County) $19,668 - Project Read Grows.
Through Project Read, the Oneida Public Library is developing its leadership role as a literacy coordinator for the community. In the coming year, the library will develop family literacy tutoring and writing programs, create manuals for tutors to use with adult students, expand the library's adult basic literacy collection and partner with GRASP (Giving Rural Adults Study Programs) to refer clients who are reading below the 6th grade level.
Queens Borough Public Library (Queens County) $18,684 - Bridging Services: Pre-GED Classes for Adult Learners.
Queens Borough Public Library will tutor students who are above the basic literacy level but still in need of help to prepare for the General Equivalency Degree (GED) test. Students will be tutored in reading for content, writing and editing, math and test-taking.
Shenendehowa Public Library (Saratoga County) $13,850 - Getting to Know You.
Since well over 7,000 Saratoga County residents speak a language other than English at home, the Shenendehowa Public Library will reach out to those who need ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) instruction. The Library will recruit and train tutors, build the supporting collection and provide space for students will be able to meet with groups for conversation practice. Students will also work together to create a multi-lingual guide to library services.
Troy Public Library (Rensselaer County) $9,905 - Adults Learn.
Tutors and staff from the Literacy Volunteers and Even Start programs and community volunteers who are trained to use software for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and use the library will be available to help residents of Troy to learn English or practice English conversation. A resource collection of ESOL books and materials will also be available at the Library.