Challenges may not just be the test

Part 2 of a series

A challenge for GED students is determining if they can pass all the sections by Jan. 1.

If students cannot pass all five sections of the old GED test by the beginning of the new year, they will essentially have to start over with the new test. The current version of the GED test is expiring at the end of 2013 and students’ scores will expire too if they do not finish and pass the test.

On Tuesday, July 9, the Bainbridge State College Adult Education Division is hosting orientation for new students wishing to earn their GED. On Monday, July 8, there will be orientation for returning students. In the other three sites, located in Early, Miller and Seminole counties, there is open enrollment so persons interested in the GED test can receive orientation at any time during the hours the sites are open.

“We will almost have to do a triage of students who come to orientation,” said Debbie McIntyre, coordinator of the division and GED.

Some students will be ready to take the entire old test by January; some will be ready for the old test except perhaps one section of it, most likely the math section that is the hardest for most students, and some students will not be ready until after January to take the new test.

If students do not complete all tests by the end of the year, they must start over in January.

“We are going to be very challenged putting students in the right track,” she said.

The new student orientation on July 9 in Bainbridge will last about 1 ½ hours.  The times for the orientation are 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. McIntyre said the division will host an orientation for new students at least once a month, perhaps twice a month, depending on need.

Students at the orientation will be asked to return the next day for a three-hour placement test, which will indicate the potential students’ skills in reading, language arts, math computation and applied math.

There is no charge for any of this.

The only charges are for the tests themselves, which are presently $160 for the entire test and $32 for each section. But if a student comes in, is motivated and spends a minimum of 40 hours on their study plan, McIntyre said there is scholarship money available.

To take the test, a student must go to the GED testing center at the One-Stop Student Center located at Bainbridge State’s main campus. The last day for testing at the Bainbridge site is Dec. 19, but McIntyre said the Technical College System of Georgia is determining which test sites will be open during the Christmas holidays.

Returning students who have passed sections of test but lack a passing score on one or more sections of the test are urged to finish the GED by January so their passing scores will be valid.  If they cannot pass all five of the sections by Jan. 1, all of their scores will be for naught.

Decatur County’s GED center is the Bainbridge State College Shotwell Education Center, located at 315 S. Boulevard Drive (behind the Golden Corral at Bainbridge Mall). Classes will start Monday, July 15. Its hours are Mondays and Tuesdays, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Wednesdays and Thursdays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, contact the Bainbridge State Adult Education Division at (229) 248-2517.

For students who find it more convenient to receive lessons and orientation in Early, Miller or Seminole counties, here are the following locations and schedules:

Early County: The center is at Bainbridge State’s Early County Site located at 40 Harold Reagan Drive in Blakely. Its hours are Mondays and Tuesdays, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Wednesdays and Thursdays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call (229) 723-5122.

Miller County: The center is located at 96 Perry St. in Colquitt. It is closed until early August, but once open, its hours will be Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Seminole County: The center is located at 203 E. Sixth St. in Donalsonville. It is closed until early August, but once open, its hours will be Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

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