All Together Now: Supporting Immigrants and Refugees Through Collaboration

Erik Jacobson is co-author of a new piece in Adult Literacy Education titled “All Together Now: Supporting Immigrants and Refugees Through Collaboration” (Co-authors: Jen Vanek, Heide Spruck Wrigley, and Janet Isserlis). It can be found here.

A key focus is how adult literacy and adult basic education programs must move beyond limited notions of adult education. To do this, they need to work together with community based organizations and other networks that provide support to immigrant and refugee communities.

Abstract: The United States needs strong collaboration among adult educators and all social service agencies that support the linguistic, economic and civic integration of refugees and immigrants. Such collaboration can make possible holistic support required to create linkages between English language education and other non-educational support services. We provide examples of several interagency collaborative projects across the United States. Further, we argue that such collaboration is essential to mitigate the limitations of current adult basic education policy, which falls short of supporting linguistic integration of English language learners at the lowest proficiency levels, implicitly prioritizing workforce development programming best suited for higher-level learners. We layout policy recommendations for the local, state, and federal levels and map out benefits of working as partners in advocacy with agencies that support resettlement and integration of adult refugee and immigrant learners.

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