To improve and promote adult learning in the South East Region of New Brunswick.
In 2006 the Provincial Government recommended that Boards/Committees be formed across the province to administer and monitor the General Educational Development (GED) and Literacy programs. It was hoped that more local involvement would help bolster these programs and lead to higher literacy scores in the province. In the southeast area of the province the South East Regional Adult Learning Board (SERALB) was formed. This Board administers the GED and Literacy programs for all English speaking adults in the region bounded by Richibucto, Petitcodiac and the New Brunswick provincial boundary in the south.
The Board incorporated in December 2007, developed a mission statement, and a constitution. The following year we applied for and were granted charitable status by the Canada Revenue Agency. The ongoing work of the Board continued under the Presidency of Peter Sawyer, a well-known proponent of literacy in the Moncton area. Each year, as required by the CRA and the province, financial statements are provided to the CRA to retain our charitable status and to the provincial government for monitoring purposes. We have proven to be a very financially responsible board.
As of February 2015, SERALB has 24 classes, full, part-time and evening, in all of our area. We even offer, through the co-operation of the New Brunswick Corrections, a class in the new correctional facility in Shediac. The money for SERALB operations comes from The Province of New Brunswick through the Department of Post-secondary Education, Training and Labour, Employment and Continuous Learning Services Branch. Our budget for 2014–2015 is approaching one million dollars. New classes are formed as the need arises. The board is given money for teacher salaries and classroom and administrative expenses but is not provided rent money for space. We rely on space being provided at no charge by the community, churches and our partners.
In 2008 we took on the responsibility for the Access Centers located in our area. As use of these centers declined they were closed and a program of Digital Literacy was developed. Digital Literacy is offered on a regular basis in all of our classes. The program is based on providing basic computer skills to help our students enter or re-enter the workplace. Digital Programs are offered to community groups as well. If you are interested, contact the Manager of Operations through firstname.lastname@example.org. We also have a co-operative agreement to work with the Workplace Essential Skills (WES) program in the area. The WES program concentrates on assisting businesses by teaching necessary workplace skills to their employees.
Our Constitution and Strategic Plan are reviewed and updated on a regular basis with emphasis on finding out our challenges and then working to eliminate them. This is important work for the Board of Directors. Recently, we completed a Quality Assessment exercise that further pointed out a few items to be addressed in the near future. One of the things that was lacking was a marketing plan which is now being dealt with through the new website and our new Open Doors logo. Our primary goal is to make more students aware of what we offer and encourage them to join a class. There is no charge for a student to attend a class and some help may be available through Employment Development or Social Services.
To celebrate our GED Graduates each year we have a Graduation Recognition evening with the graduates and their families in attendance. This is an open event where we can applaud the work accomplished by our students and present each one with a certificate to go along with the diploma received from the Province of New Brunswick. The date for this year’s graduation is posted under Upcoming Events on the website.