Message to the Congress Transmitting First Annual Report of the National Advisory Committee on Adult Basic Education.
To the Congress of the United States:
It is with a sense of pride, but also with a sense of urgency, that I transmit to you the First Annual Report of the National Advisory Committee on Adult Basic Education.
Today, more Americans are in school than ever before. More are receiving high school and college degrees. More go on to graduate school.
However, despite these encouraging advances, more than 24 million of our adult citizens, one adult out of every five, still do not have the equivalent of an eighth-grade education.
With the establishment of the Adult Basic Education Program, the Congress created a vital tool for the building of a better America. Since 1965, the program has sought out and served more than a million undereducated adults.
Many participants in the program have now left the welfare rolls, obtained employment, and received raises and promotions.
Others have taken vocational training in high schools. Still others have achieved high school equivalency ratings.
Most significantly, there has been a heartening change in the attitudes of these million Americans. They have gained pride and self-respect, ambition and determination, and they have begun to participate in their communities.
But the job is far from finished. Every year, more than a million young people drop out of school and become potential candidates for the adult education program. Hundreds of foreigners come to our shores without an educational background adequate to enable them to lead productive lives.
This report presents a vivid picture of the challenges ahead for the Adult Basic Education Program, and I commend it to your attention.
LYNDON B. JOHNSON
The White House
September 16, 1968
Note: The report, transmitted to the President on August 27, 1968, is entitled "Adult Basic Education-Meeting the Challenge of the 1970's, First Annual Report of the National Advisory Committee on Adult Basic Education to the President of the United States and Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare, August 1968" (58 pp., processed).
The National Advisory Committee on Adult Basic Education was established on November 3, 1966, by title III of the Elementary and Secondary Education Amendments of 1966 (Public Law 89-750, 80 Stat. 1191).
Lyndon B. Johnson, Message to the Congress Transmitting First Annual Report of the National Advisory Committee on Adult Basic Education. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/237462