LFCC to take over area adult education program

Posted: October 3, 2012

The Winchester Star

MIDDLETOWN — Beginning this month, Lord Fairfax Community College is taking over operation of the Northern Shenandoah Valley Adult Education (NSVAE) program from Frederick County Public Schools.

Students will experience no change in service or classes.

The program, which will merge with the Page County Adult Education program, serves about 1,500 students age 18 and above in Winchester and the counties of Frederick, Clarke, Shenandoah, Page and Warren.

Through the program, some students work to earn their GEDs, while others study English as a Second Language. They then go on to training, into the workforce or to a post-secondary school.

According to Chris Coutts, vice president for academic and student affairs at LFCC, the partnership will benefit the region because high school diplomas and GEDs open access to higher education and workforce development programs offered at the college.

“It’s a good opportunity to really extend education for adults in the region,” Coutts said. “That’s what we do.”

The classes will operate at the same area locations: Douglas Community Learning Center at 598 N. Kent St.; Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church, 26 W. Boscawen St.; Dowell J. Howard Center at 156 Dowell J. Circle; LFCC Middletown campus; and F&M Education Center of Clarke County at 16 N. Buckmarsh St.

Last year, officials from the NSVAE, LFCC, Frederick County Public Schools and the Page County Adult Education program discussed the structure of the adult basic education program and what would best serve the region.

“Through those discussions, we agreed that Lord Fairfax Community College is the right location for the program because of the college’s connection to education for people of all ages as well as workforce development,” Frederick County Superintendent David Sovine said in a press release.

Expanding the service region to Page County might also have given the school division too large an area to cover, Coutts said.

LFCC will hire a new program manager and program specialist to oversee NSVAE. The program is funded with an annual $481,000 Virginia Department of Education grant, which will be administered by the college.

Steve Edwards, coordinator of policy, records management and communications for Frederick County Public Schools, said no positions with NSVAE have been eliminated and there is no financial impact on the division as a result of the change.

LFCC has three locations — the Fauquier and Middletown campuses and the Luray-Page County Center. It serves Winchester and the counties of Frederick, Clarke, Fauquier, Page, Rappahannock, Shenandoah and Warren.

— Contact Rebecca Layne at rlayne@winchesterstar.com