JPCC’s Adult Learning Program opens its doors to over 50 immigrants

On February 1, Jamaica Plain Community Centers Adult Learning Program (ALP) launched a new class for basic and low level English Speakers of Other Languages. ALP, based in the Curtis Hall Community Center, is a community-based school which currently serves learners from over 40 countries who collectively speak 26 different languages.

With the financial assistance of the Board of Directors of the Jamaica Plain Community Centers (JPCC), this new class–originally created to accommodate 15-20 students–has an enrollment of over 40, all of whom are prepared to collaborate with their peers, connect with learning in new ways, and expand relationships through English.

Since early 2023, migrants from Haiti have been arriving in Boston, seeking refuge from the economic and political turmoil of their home country. Additionally, since the beginning of the 2023-2024 school year ALP has seen a wave of new enrollments, primarily in their low-level English classes and primarily from Haitian migrants. ALP originally reached out to the City of Boston for help to compensate teaching staff that were pressed with overwhelming student enrollment in pre-existing classes. When the City of Boston declined the request to provide any funding, ALPs Director, Dr. Joyce Henderson, reached out to the Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the JPCC, Kerry Costello, and the decision to assist the students was immediately granted.

“All of us here at ALP are grateful for the assistance in creating this new class,” said ALP’s Education Coordinator, Tomm McCarthy. “I hope this is the first of many steps in helping our new neighbors to achieve their goals like finding lasting employment and pursuing higher education.” The additional English class on Thursday and Friday will not fix the migration crisis in this country, state, or even the city, but ALP in Jamaica Plain is doing their part to prepare new migrants to overcome challenges associated with communication and enable them to give back to the community that has embraced them.

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