Workplace English Literacy Program
The primary goal of the Workplace English Literacy (WEL) Program is to improve English literacy of workers in the service area who are unable to enroll in adult education classes.
- Help improve the English communication skills of non-English speaking individuals working in the Greater Bay Area.
- Minimize misunderstanding, miscommunication between employer-employee relationship in the workplace.
- Help build self-confidence of non-English speakers.
This program is designed for immigrants who do not speak English as their first language, have received very little formal education in their native language, and work long hours to support their families. The program will provide a comprehensive English literacy course, which will include health education, and safety, sanitation or hygiene as they pertain to their job description.
The program tailors its services to the needs of the participants. In the pilot program, we sought out tutors who spoke the native language of the participant. The result of the pilot program indicated that the participants in the WEL Program did improve in their language skills and self-confidence.
In the 2002-2003 session, we intend to tailor the needs even further by providing health education that promote healthy living. In addition, participants will receive language dictionaries, and other books that, in the future, they can use as references .
The classes will be bilingual in Spanish and English, as the majority of the participants speak Spanish. The participants will learn how to read, write, and speak grammatically correct English. This will bolster their self-confidence in speaking English as well as to empower them in their workplaces as they will be taught the resources available to them. By being literate in English, workers will improve the atmosphere of the workplace as they will be able to communicate among themselves, and with their respective supervisors, thus eliminating the language barrier, and decreasing misunderstandings and miscommunications.
The uniqueness of the WEL Program is that English literacy is brought to the workplace and taught by experienced educators and teachers assistants. In addition, we build and structure the times of the classes and the curriculum keeping in mind the fact that adults who attend it are busy individuals who are taking time off from work.
IASE recruits college students to sign up as tutors to participate in WEL. While they tutor, they will also be expected to follow the IASE service learning curriculum. The participation in this program is cost free to college students.