Getting Ready An Orientation to Adult Education (Insert program name here.) Preface

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Learning Needs Screening

Appendix E

Before proceeding to the questions, read this statement aloud to the student:

The following questions are about your school and life experiences.

We’re trying to find out how it was for you (or your family members) when you were in school or how some of these issues might affect your life now.

Your responses to these questions will help identify resources and services you might need to be successful in completing you education or getting a job.

  1. Provide the student with a copy of the questions to look at.

  1. Read each question out loud to the student. Circle “Yes” or “No.” for each question in Sections A, B, C, and D. Note: you may administer the screening to a group of students, having each student circle their own answers, but the questions should still be read out loud.

  1. Count the number of “Yes” answers in Sections A, B, C, and D. Multiply the number of “Yes” responses in each section by the appropriate number below:

Section A total X 1

Section B total X 2

Section C total X 3

Section D total X 4

4. Record the number obtained for each section. To obtain a Total Score, add the subtotals from Sections A, B, C, and D and write the total at the bottom of the page.
5. Also ask all students the Additional Questions in Section E.
6. If a student has a Total Score for Sections A-D is 12 or more, proceed with the Confidential Questions in Section F. Write down the student’s answers; and have the student sign the Release of Information. If you complete Section F, Confidential Questions, this screening will then become a strictly confidential document and should be kept in a separate locked file.
7. If the Total Score for Sections A-D is 12 or more, refer the student for formal psychological assessment. If the client has other issues (vision, hearing, etc.) identified in Section E, make additional referrals (vision specialist, audiologist, etc.).
8. If the Total Score for Section A-D is less than 12, you may decide to skip the Confidential Questions in Section F, but it is recommended that all students be asked the Additional Questions in Section E (since many adults have other problems that are unrelated to learning disabilities) that can affect their learning progress.
Note: The 13 questions on Parts A-D of the Learning Needs Screening were developed for the Washington State Division of Employment and Social Services Learning Disabilities Initiative (November 1994 to June 1997) under contract by Nancie Payne, Senior Consultant, Payne & Associates, Olympia, Washington. Other parts of the screening have been adapted and modified for use with West Virginia Adult Basic Education (ABE) students.

The Learning Needs Screening is not a diagnostic tool and should not be used to determine the existence of a disability. Its purpose is to determine who should be referred for formal assessment.

Appendix F

Appendix G
etting Realistic NRS Goals--Considerations


Setting realistic goals is key to reporting program performance.  Realistic goals are those that can be accomplished within the program year.


Students may have many long range goals.  The performance system requires an ANNUAL REPORT.  Therefore, for the performance system, use only those goals that are attainable within the program year.


Here are some considerations for determining realistic goals.




For instance

Post Secondary

1.  Mildred enrolled in April with math and reading scores at 9.0 on TABE.  She works during the day and attends class on Tuesday and Thursday evenings.  She does not seem to have hindrances to learning except missing class occasionally to go to PTA with her kids.


2.  Jacob enrolled in November with reading and math scores around 10.0.  He attends the center from 8:30 til noon, Monday through Thursday. 


Obtain employment

  • Do you have a pre-employment curriculum to integrate with basic?

  • Is he/she connected with One-Stop or other job placement organization?

  • Does he/she have prior work history?

  • Does he/she know what kind of job he/she wants?  Are those jobs available?  What skills do they require?  What is the gap between his/her skills and the job skill requirements?

  • Entry level

  • Month of entry

  • Hours of week of attendance

  • Special learning needs

1.  Raleigh really wants a job.  Other than doing odd jobs for his uncle, he has no job skills.  His reading and math skills are at 5.1 and 6.2 respectively.  He may have a learning disability.  You do not have a pre-employment curriculum nor do you have a strong link with job placement services.  Raleigh wants to attend evening classes.  Raleigh says that his reason for enrolling is to get a really good paying job so he can become independent.


2.  Jesus just arrived in the country last month, January, and has been staying with his sister.  His verbal English is passable but needs work.   His reading is 2.0 but his math is 8.5 without word problems.  He can attend class full time—8:30 til noon Monday through Friday.   Jesus worked as a laborer in El Salvador.  You have a pre-employment curriculum and a good connection with the One-Stop job placement service.


Retain a job

  • What skills does the job require?

  • What is the gap between his/her skills and the required job skills?

  • Can you customize your basic skills program to job specific tasks?

  • How much time do you have?

  • Entry level

  • Month of entry

  • Hours of week of attendance

  • Special learning needs

1.  Wilma works in a textile plant that is replacing the “gears, pulleys, and levers” with jet air looms.  All of the old jobs (doffer, weaver, fixer) are going away.  Management has told her if she can demonstrate reading and math skills at the 10th grade level necessary to be trained on the new looms, they would love to consider her for one of the new jobs.  She has been a good employee and they want to hang on to her.  She enrolled in May and has until November to reach the skill level.  Her reading and math are about 8th grade level.  The plant will give her release time to come to class Monday and Thursday mornings and she wants to come Tuesday and Thursday evening on her own.


2.  Palos is a fork lift driver.  As a part of his job, he has to count and document the number of cases of peanuts that are on each pallet.  He cannot do multiplication but has devised his own system using “sets” to determine the number of cases per pallet.  Because his supervisor assumed Palos was using multiplication, he has give Palos additional responsibilities in inventory with an accompanying significant pay raise.  However, now Palos must use multiplication.


His math skills are basic addition and subtraction.  He enrolls in October in a panic wanting to learn the skill before his boss finds out.


  • Entry level at or near adult secondary

  • Month of entry

  • Hours of week of attendance

  • Special learning needs

1.  Evelyn enrolls in March.  Her work schedule and family responsibilities allows her to attend only two nights or two mornings per week.  Her reading and math scores are 6.5 and 8.9 respectively.  She does not seem to have any special learning needs.


2.  Bob brags that he will accomplish his life goal of a GED this year.  At enrollment in September his reading and math scores are 3.4 and 4.7 respectively.  On initial interview he reports a diagnosed learning disability--disgraphia.  He works a swing shift as a security person so his schedule will be mornings two weeks and evenings two weeks.



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