News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

NOCHE

Metro RTA

Northeast Ohio Medical University


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Education


Changes are in store for the GED in Ohio and nationally
Price increase, test reformatting are among multiple updates to GED coming in January
Story by AMY HANSEN


 
Geannine Shuster
Courtesy of AMY HANSEN
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:
It goes without saying these days that education is the key to success, and a high school diploma is just the bare minimum one needs to begin to get ahead. For those who never finished high school, the General Educational Development exam - commonly known as the GED - offers a second chance.

Passing the GED is generally considered the equivalent of graduating high school. As StateImpact Ohio's education reporter Amy Hansen tells us, significant changes to the GED that take effect in January step up the challenge for both students and educators.
LISTEN: HANSEN ON GED CHANGES

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:05)


Geannine Shuster is good at multiplication, but fractions, she says, give her a little bit of trouble. A volunteer tutor at Cleveland’s adult literacy program Seeds of Learning guides her through the math. Shuster, who is 39, is one of about 350 people every month who utilize the center’s free GED exam preparation classes. She’s planning on taking the test sometime next year, when a new, more challenging version will be introduced. 

“I think about it and I get nervous and excited about it all at the same time," Shuster says. "It’s just a happy, confused, scared feeling all at once.”

Time for change
Nicole Chestang is vice-president of the company that administers the test, GED Testing Services. The GED was last changed in 2002, she says, so an update is overdue.

“The status quo was no longer good enough," Chestang says. "We needed to step up our game and make sure that people who came through this program could demonstrate strong academic skills, including critical thinking and problem solving skills, so the test is changing to provide the opportunity for the test taker to really demonstrate a whole breadth of skills but across the same areas that we’ve traditionally tested.”

Seeds of Literacy’s Education Consultant Dan McLaughlin has completely revamped the study program to help students better prepare for the test’s new challenges.

“The Common Core standards have a lot more to do with close reading, a lot more analytical writing, so we tried to beef up our curriculum by having longer, information based reading added to the curriculum, and also have our students do a whole lot more writing than they had been doing," McLaughlin says.

No more paper
McLaughlin is also using the program’s new computer lab to teach people basic technology skills, like how to drag and drop and point and click. That’s necessary because the paper version of the test is being eliminated; now it’ll only be offered on a computer at a testing center. That could be a problem according to Jo Steigerwald, Seeds of Learning’s Development Officer, who says the majority of their students don’t have a computer at home.

“To write an essay by hand, if that’s all you’ve been doing, is very different from composing an essay, on a keyboard, in a timed situation, during a really high stakes test..." Steigerwald says. "It’s just another additional skill that they need to learn.”

Don't get discouraged
They’ll also have to find a way to pay more for the test. The new version will cost $120 in Ohio, and the paper version of the old test cost $40. Dan McLaughlin worries any one of these changes could discourage people from pursuing a GED. 

“I think a lot of people are angry, especially when they hear about the cost..." McLaughlin says. "A lot of our students feel like this is their shot to get back into the labor force, and this is just a huge stop.”

But Geannine Schuster says she’s not deterred. The mother-of-three has big plans of passing the test and then enrolling in nursing classes at a local community college. Schuster says, "I just wanna make something of my life and getting my GED is the first start of it.”

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook



Stories with Recent Comments

HOF's Canton expansion could take an island and make it a village
I live in the block from Broad St to the Hall of Fame and will be impacted by the expansion. I am in the process of selling my home and planned to long before i...

Cleveland redeploys police to replace rejected red-light traffic cameras
Periodic rotational enforcement without warning does NOT change behavior and the city officials know that. This is the basis of all officer-run enforcement trap...

New enrollment period offers more insurance options
The removal of federal funding for healthcare CO-OPs may limit the growth of the CO-OP movement. http://www.healthcaretownhall.com/?p=6381

The family of Boardman vet killed in Vietnam receives his medals
My name is Mike Eisenbraun. I am Larry's brother. I was 14 years old when Larry was killed in Vietnam. He has been gone for 46 years but it seems like yester...

Cleveland seniors are creating new wealth -- and facing new challenges
Why is anyone surprised that we people over 65 are not retiring? If you have been paying attention, defined company funded pensions were phasing out in the eigh...

Ohio company cuts off a dairy supplier after allegations of animal abuse
these people should be held accountable for their actions. i would be more than pleased to see a year or more behind bars. i will NEVER eat anything that comes ...

Goodyear recruits thousands of vets
What a wonderful interview! Excellent reporting skills by a talented young reporter! I look forward to hearing more from Ms. Schley!

Ohio Democratic Party begins the rebuilding process
I agree 100% with Sen. Brown. I think it is absolutely critical for the Democratic Party in Ohio to engage in the long, tedious, hard task of re-building from t...

They're talking again in the Macedonia bridge dispute
Norfolk Southern says the Ledge road bridge meets regulations for train traffic, however it was built as an overpass for a roadway and/or farm usage. I think t...

Cleveland City Council to consider transgender public restroom law
this is sick. I do not want my daughter in the same bathroom as a perverted 45 year old man. this proposed legislation could seriously damage the security of ch...

Copyright © 2014 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University