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The mission of Adult Basic Education in Minnesota is to provide adults with educational opportunities to acquire and improve their literacy skills necessary to be self-sufficient and to participate effectively as productive workers, family members, and citizens.


Along with supporting the above mission statement, Southwest ABE prioritizes the goal of assisting students in gaining skills to obtain meaningful employment. Southwest ABE sees the priority of employment training as the most effective means of assisting our students in all areas of their lives.

Instructional Programs

(ESL) English as a Second Language

This is instruction to those whose native language is not English. ESL classes from the pre‐literacy level to the advanced level, help students develop speaking, listening, reading, writing, and grammar skills to communicate effectively and function successfully within their workplaces, communities, and families.

Family Literacy

This is a program for adults and their children. It features instruction for adults in literacy, instruction in parenting, and educational/developmental services for children. ABE partners with Early Childhood Family education (ECFE), Even Start, Head Start, and other agencies to provide family literacy services.

General Educational Development (GED)

This is a program which prepares students to pass the examination for a national high school equivalency diploma that includes a set of five tests (Math, Reading, Writing, Social Studies, and Science).

Transition Into Employment

This is a program for students who need goal‐specific elementary or secondary‐level basic skills such as work‐related math, functional literacy, reading, or writing assistance. It also includes core content areas of Basic Technology skills, Job Seeking skills, Soft Skills necessary for work.

Adult Diploma Program

This is a program for adults who wish to return to school to earn their High School diploma. Students attend classes to earn credits which will lead to a high school diploma.

Workforce Preparation

Workforce Education provides basic academic and literacy skills to learners who are already employed by a specific business, industry, or company— sometimes provided at the learner’s place of employment. Employment readiness programs include general employability skills and instruction in soft skills that are essential in the workplace.

Citizenship/Civics Education

This program prepares non‐US citizens for US citizenship. Preparation would include preparing an application for citizenship and English language instruction if needed. Civics education would include content related to general civics knowledge and participation in a democratic society.

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