English as a Second Language (ESL)

Imagine living in a foreign country and not being able to read or speak the language. Think about how difficult it would be to perform the everyday tasks most of us take for granted: shopping for groceries, renting an apartment, getting directions, reading a bus schedule, or communicating with doctors, merchants, or teachers.

Without good English skills, most immigrants cannot reach their full potential and become active contributors to the community.

Just as in other communities in the United States, the immigrant population in the Central Arkansas area has grown rapidly in recent years. Since 1990, Literacy Action’s trained volunteers have taught non-English speaking adults from all over the world to read and communicate in English. These students come from all walks of life, from professionals with advanced degrees to manual laborers to stay-at-home mothers.

How Our ESL Program Works

After completing an individual assessment to determine their English reading, speaking, and comprehension levels with the Literacy Action office, new ESL students are assigned to tutors or small classes that can best address their needs and objectives. All lessons are conducted in a public location or online, and all services and materials are free of charge.

Tutors are trained by Literacy Action to teach English language learners the skills they need to succeed in our community. Tutors use a wide range of nationally-recognized teaching materials, as well as incorporating other materials geared to the student’s particular needs and interests.

Students are retested periodically to assess their progress. At every lesson, the tutor evaluates the student’s steps toward achieving their personal objectives. Tutors are both instructors and cheerleaders, making sure students stay engaged and see the results of their efforts.

Who is Eligible?

Literacy Action of Central Arkansas serves all of Pulaski, Faulkner, and the surrounding counties’ residents 18 years of age or older who want to improve their English skills. For more information, email us at  laca@literacyactionar.org or call the Literacy Action Office at 501-372-7323.