|Cost of GED expected to triple in ’14|
|Friday, February 15, 2013 2:05 PM|
“The classes are free but right now you pay $40 for the test,” she said. “In August, it will go from being pencil and paper to being all on computer. They’re estimating the new price will be around $120 because now we’ll have to pay for software updates and everything else.”
The registration deadline for the old test is Aug. 9. The new computer-based GED test will be initiated Jan. 1, 2014.
“You have to be an adult. We do take 16-18-year-olds but there’s a lot of extra paperwork,” Ricker said. “Most of the time our students are people who didn’t finish high school or those who have been out of high school for a while and would like to pursue a four-year degree but need a refresher to build their skills up first.”
According to Ricker, there seems to be a widespread opinion that taking the GED course is an easy way out of high school. From what she’s observed, the GED test isn’t as easy as people assume.
“I’m really surprised by how difficult it is. I have a college degree and I could pass it; most high school graduates could but that doesn’t mean it’s easy,” she said.
“Students think it’s an easy way around finishing high school but it’s not. I give a copy of older tests to guidance counselors and a copy of the current test, so people can see that it’s not the easiest thing to drop out and then just take the GED. I’ve gotten some positive feedback but some still drop out.”
Difficulty aside, Ricker says getting either a high school degree or a GED is better than no degree at all.
“It’s the equivalent of a high school degree and having one or the other is incredibly important,” She said. “Especially now, when it seems like every job requires it. When the economy tanked we had a horde of people rushing in to take it. I think, I had 80 people at one time. Now, on average, we have about three or four per class.”
Ricker says the important thing is to make the decision to show up.
“We supply all the materials, all you need to do is be there. I know it’s scary, I know it’s hard, but I’ve heard from past students that it’s worth it,” she continued. “It’s also about that personal satisfaction you get from achieving a goal. Just show up, sign up and I’ll take care of you.”