Everybody needs a little help - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Everybody needs a little help

By Ryan Houston - bio | email

ALBANY,  GA (WALB) –The graduation rate of students in some Southwest Georgia counties is at 50%. It's a known fact that people with  a GED or a  diploma make more than those without it.

An Albany man is volunteering his services to help better educate the community. Umam Abdul Aqal teaches GED classes and tutors students in his free time.

He supplies the books, pen and paper, and the students just have to bring their brain.

"I came for the gates test, to get more knowledge for it," said student Rico Smart.

"I've failed it three times. The first time it was free and the others cost me $600 a piece," said student Tony Gilbert. The Regents end-of-course writing exam at ASU can be pretty challenging.

"Before I take any more classes, I wanted to come and get more help with it," said Gilbert. 

By failing that test, it can hold you back. "I wouldn't say the test is, but this writing skill is holding me back. So if I can get this skill down; I can advance in my career," said Gilbert. 

Rico Smart's career path is to teach high school math. Before that can happen he must successful complete the teaching test for elementary and high school."For me to be able to teach it, I figured it's going to be questions on the test from high school,"said Smart.

That's where the Umam's class comes into play. "The vibe I get from him, and how he speaks lets me know, he's into helping me one on one," said Gilbert.

"Just in seeing things I haven't seen in a while, it's going to  trigger my memory. Yea, it's going to be very helpful," said Smart.  Helping to better educate the community is the main goal.

"If there's something you can give back, then you can't complain without doing something about it," said Umam Abdul Akil. Better educated people makes southwest Georgia a better place.

These classes are free of charge. The GED skills are taught Monday and Wednesday from 10 am to 1pm at the public library.

If your interested in attending please call Mr. Abdul-Aqil at (229) 435-5306.

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