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September 8, 2009
The Manitoba government is investing $464,000 in a new adult literacy strategy to develop stronger strategic partnerships with workforce and industry leaders, provide easier access to literacy programs, develop better skills assessment tools and offer enhanced training for instructors, Advanced Education and Literacy Minister Diane McGifford announced today.“We recognize the social and economic costs of low literacy and numeracy skills and their long-term impact on individuals, families and employers,” McGifford said. “Through this new five-component strategy, Manitoba’s literacy partners will connect literacy learners with the resources needed to maintain or improve their employment skills, health and income levels with new and existing resources.”
The strategy framework will focus on five key areas including the adult literacy program, adult learning centres, workforce development and employment, adult learning and literacy supports for English as an additional language (EAL) learners, and Aboriginal education. A government adult literacy group will support the co-ordination of literacy activity across departments involved in adult literacy.
“In recognition of International Literacy Day, I’m very pleased to note that Manitoba’s total support for adult learning and literacy programs for 2009-10 is just over $19.5 million, an increase of close to $1.5 million over last year,” McGifford said.
The province signed an agreement with the federal government in May 2009 to provide more than $34 million to Manitoba’s employment and training programs through Canada’s Economic Action Plan: Strategic Training and Transition Funds. The government of Manitoba is committing $665,000 from this funding to support a two-year project titled Enhancing Transitions for Adults to Further Education, Employment and Training.
“This project will work with adult learning centres and adult literacy programs in Winnipeg and two rural locations to review and develop curriculum tools and program models that will help adult learners make more successful transitions to further education, employment and training,” McGifford said. “The project will also see the creation of a made-in-Manitoba literacy and essential skills assessment tool.”
The minister is proclaiming September 2009 Literacy Month to remind all Manitobans of the importance of strong literacy, numeracy and other essential skills at home and at work.
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