November 12, 2008, Nevada City, CA - Nevada County Library's coordinator of adult literacy services has been named president of the Literacy Section of the California Library Association.
Beginning January 1, 2009, Alan D. Archer of Grass Valley will lead the group which represents literacy programs in over 100 library jurisdictions across California. The group's objective is to help improve the skills of an estimated three million adults in the State who read, write, or figure numbers below, functional levels. Archer has directed Nevada County Library's Literacy Program since 2005. The program--now called "Read Up!" targets a projected ten thousand county residents who are deficient in one or more of the three Rs, according to County Librarian Mary Ann Trygg.
One of the principle challenges, according to the county librarian, is getting people who lack these skills to come forward and do something about it. They frequently hide the deficiencies from employers, friends and family, often with troublesome results. Careers can be ended or shortened, family life interrupted, and safety threatened if drug labels or warning signs are misread. Less threatening is the inability to enjoy publications, menus, recipes, and letters; write communications; use computers; or even count change.
"Alan's appointment at the state level is a well deserved recognition for spearheading our local program which now serves nearly three times as many students as it did when he joined us four years ago," Trygg said.
The County Library's Read Up! Program is directed by Archer and operates with a very generous group of volunteer tutors. Archer describes it as a life-changing service that is free and private for all residents, offering one-on-one training that is tailored to the student and timed to suit his or her schedule. "The training follows guidelines of the California State Library and Proliteracy America. and is provided as long as necessary", Archer stated. English reading and writing as well as math are taught throughout Nevada County. English as a second language (ESL) is provided to foreign-born residents of Truckee, as well.
Editors Note: ESL is offered in Western Nevada County by partners in English Language Learning, A United Way Agency, formerly known as the Nevada County Literacy Council.
Nevada County Library provides public library services to children, teens, and adults from it's three branch libraries in Nevada City, Grass Valley and Truckee; its station libraries in Penn Valley and at Bear River High School; and the Doris Foley Library for Historical Research in Nevada City. Printed, video and musical collections and audio books along with reference services and children's programming are available along with computer workstations and WIFI capability at the three large branches.
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