Library receives $10,000 grant to offer ESL classes

American Dream Literacy logo2The Atlantic City Free Public Library was one of 16 public libraries selected nationwide this year to receive a $10,000 American Dream Literacy Initiative grant from the American Library Association (ALA) and Dollar General Literacy Foundation. With the funding, the library will offer a new program, “Path to the American Dream: English Language Learning.”
As part of the program, the library will hold English as a Second Language (ESL) basic courses that will help participants learn how read, write and hold conversations in English. Registration is required for these courses, which are free and open to adults 18 and older.
Also, the library will hold a weekly Walk-in ESL Lab from 10 a.m.-noon on Mondays. This is a self-directed session where participants can access the language-learning software Rosetta Stone, along with other library resources, to improve their English skills. A staff member will be available to provide assistance and answer questions. Registration is not required for the lab.
The classes and lab take place in the Main Library Learning Center. Please visit the library Help Desk or call (609) 345-2269 to register for the class or for more information.
The Atlantic City Free Public Library was selected for this grant through a competitive, peer-reviewed application process. Nearly 100 public libraries applied for the 16 available grants, according to the ALA Public Programs Office. Atlantic City was the only New Jersey library selected.
The American Dream Literacy Initiative strives to develop tools and resources for libraries and library staff to provide effective literacy services to adult English language learners in their communities and across the country.
Since the program’s inception, more than 200 libraries in Dollar General communities have initiated or expanded literacy services for adult English language learners. The grants allow libraries to augment their print and digital ESL collections; increase computer access and training; provide job training; hold English language learning (ELL), general educational development (GED) and citizenship classes; and raise the visibility of services for immigrant populations.
The American Dream Literacy Initiative is made possible through the generous support of the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.
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