Test sheet highlighting the letters GED

ILION – New York state has brought back the GED test, and local adults can start preparing for the test now through Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES while waiting for the state to approve a testing site in the region.

“They can come in, and we’ll give them a test to see where they’re at,” Herkimer BOCES Director of Adult, Early Childhood and Outreach Education Mary Kline said. “We can help them prepare and get them ready, so when there is a test available, they’ll be ready to go.”

The Test Assessing Secondary Completion was used in place of the GED for the past several years, but the TASC ended on Dec. 31, 2021, with the GED coming back for 2022. Local BOCES are waiting for the state to approve GED testing sites in Utica, Rome and Herkimer, and some local adults who were in the middle of preparing for TASC exams are still waiting for an opportunity to take the GED, Kline said.

In the meantime, Herkimer BOCES still has free services available to help local adults prepare for the GED. Classes are small, instruction is individualized and the timing is based on the adult students’ individual schedules.

“We can work around whatever schedule they have,” Kline said.

Work can be done at home, in-person directly with a teacher or a combination of both, Kline said.

“We try to be as accommodating as we can,” she said.

If interested in preparing for the GED, the first step is to call Herkimer BOCES at 315-867-2085 or 315-867-2079 to schedule an initial meeting and screening at the Herkimer BOCES Remington Educational Complex at 77 E. North St. in Ilion.

“They still should call,” Kline said. “We’ll get them ready.”

After the screening, students take full assessments in mathematics and reading to determine where they stand and what they need help in to prepare for the GED.

For the ongoing studies, Herkimer BOCES also offers GED preparation services at the Dolgeville-Manheim Public Library in Dolgeville, the Margaret Reaney Memorial Library in St. Johnsville and the Little Falls Public Library in Little Falls.

If local adults don’t want to wait for the GED or want to try something different, Herkimer BOCES also offers assistance with the National External Diploma Program. There will be 25 local adults graduating this school year through Herkimer BOCES from either the TASC from 2021 or from the NEDP.

The NEDP is only for adults who are 21 or older. It involves an initial screening test, and then the work becomes highly individualized as students work one-on-one with a teacher, do most of the work online and conduct a research project on a topic that’s important or intriguing to them instead of taking more tests. “You can really focus on something that interests you,” Kline said.