Formal registration for the Aiken County School District’s adult education program will begin Monday and run through Thursday.

“Everything is still free, and you can enroll at any time during the school year,” Director Pat Keating said.

Adult education opportunities include GED preparation, high school diploma completion, WorkKeys, English for Speakers of Other Languages, literacy and adult basic education.

The department offers services at nine sites through much of Aiken County – with some offering specific classes.

The adult education department can be found at the third green tab on the left of the webpage. The service sites available through much of the county can be found there.

“What I think is really relevant is that everything is free, including all assessments and the GED test,” Keating said. “It would cost $150 if you were on your own.”

The Career Reading Certificate Program is a process for developing and documenting recognized workplace skills. The WorkKeys system serves a skills measurement standard.

“I’ve loved it,” said Keating, now in his second year. “We’ve got a lot of services with more technology and several web-based programs, in addition to classroom instruction. With 26 years in education, I’m passionate about non-traditional learners. We’re touching families in relevant ways.”

Originally, the GED was operated as a nonprofit for decades, Keating said.

Recently, the instructional and testing program was purchased and converted to a for-profit business.

There are several other competitive companies that are likely to submit their own bids in the hope of taking over the process.

One adult education site has closed – previously located on York Street next to what is now the BI-LO store. A new site will be announced soon, Keating said.

For more information about adult education, call 803-641-2476 or visit

Senior writer Rob Novit is the Aiken Standard’s education reporter and has been with the newspaper since September 2001. He is a native of Walterboro and majored in journalism at the University of Georgia.