Free English as a second language course now offered in Clark County

Clark State has received a grant to offer free English as a second language courses in Clark County. Staff photo

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Clark State has received a grant to offer free English as a second language courses in Clark County. Staff photo

Clark State Community College is now offering a free English as a Second Language Course in Clark County.

The school received a $7,500 grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation. The school was able to match the funds with money from the state of Ohio.

The program is for people who need help learning the English language, said Brendan Greaney, director of access and retention services for Clark State. It found out about the program through its state partner Ohio Aspire.

“We are focusing the program in Western Clark County because there’s a large population of folks who need that help out there,” Greaney said.

A Clark State instructor will visit the site twice a week for two-hour classes each day. Students will work on reading, writing and math skills focusing on the English language

“So primarily it’s going to help with employment. We are working with several different community partners, including an agency called Pathstone and another agency called Impact Logistics, which hires workers for Proctor and Gamble,” Greaney said. “These folks need the English language skills to receive employment through Proctor and Gamble. So, we are helping them with employment-ability skills and understanding the basic English language.”

Greaney said the community college knew there was an existing population in Western Clark County that needed the services and that’s where it wanted to focus.

“We will work with all levels. Anybody who knows very little English or maybe needs to brush up on few little areas. In particular, the folks we are working with at Impact Logistics. They have a very specific set of skills they need in order to work in the distribution center,” Greaney said.

The class is free and is available to people ages 18 and above. It hopes to serve at least 30 students this year. The class will continue for the current fiscal year, which runs through the end of June. The school will then apply for the grant again next year.

“Without these kind of skills, these folks are not going to be able to find meaningful employment that will be able to pay the bills so this is going to allow them to do that and enter into high paying jobs in our area,” Greaney said.

For more information about the class, please call 937-328-6473.

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