SABES promotes high quality adult basic education services through training, support, and resources that improve
the skills and knowledge of practitioners and strengthen programs. We achieve this mission by:
- providing staff development that stresses participation, reflection, and innovation;
- discovering and sharing relevant research and effective practices;
- collaborating with other organizations and agencies; and
- remaining responsive to the field and to adult learners.
Through this combination of partnership and leadership, we develop the field's capacity to equip
learners to succeed in the economy, contribute more fully to their families and communities,
develop leadership skills, and reach personal learning goals.
History, the Short Version
Established in 1990 by the Massachusetts Department of Education,
SABES, the System for Adult Basic Education Support, is a comprehensive training and technical assistance
initiative for educators and programs. To briefly sketch the background scene, presently one out of three Massachusetts adults—more
than one-and-a-half million people representing many diverse groups—are in need of literacy services. These adults are served by a broad
spectrum of programs, each with its own philosophy, program design and methodology. SABES came into being chiefly to help Adult Basic Education (ABE)
practitioners further develop the skills, talents and knowledge needed to provide exemplary educational services
to adult learners.
SABES's services are delivered through five Regional Support Centers (RSCs) located at community colleges across
the state. At each RSC, a Regional Coordinator helps programs determine their needs and then develops a variety
of training opportunities to meet those needs. At any given time, a range of activities may be occurring in the regions,
including: consultation, workshops, mini-courses, institutes, study circles, mentoring, peer coaching, teacher research
projects and other training activities. (See our calendar for current listings.) In collaboration
with the five RSCs, a SABES Central Resource Center in downtown Boston coordinates the development of statewide activities.
The SABES Library has an extensive resource collection consisting of both commercially-published materials and locally-produced
items, such as curricula, training outlines and learner-generated materials. Borrowers may search our online catalog.
The Central Resource Center serves a key support function for this collection, providing cataloging, bibliographies, book reviews, information searches
and document delivery services to augment the training activities.
About Our Web Site
First launched in December 1996, our site primarily is intended to provide adult literacy practitioners with genuinely useful
information (aka, content). Although we do offer a list which connects you to several other literacy-related websites, we
feel that unless practitioners find unique material here which may be used either in their classrooms or in their ongoing
professional development, then we will experience a rapidly decreasing audience and utility. We hope that this site will be
vibrant, engaging and ever-changing, giving you many reasons to visit again.
Tech requirements: We want our site to be accessible by a wide range of platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux) and
browsers, and to present few hurdles to site visitors, but we also believe that having a fairly current browser is a plus,
largely to take advantage of new technologies and to ensure that the most current security updates are being utilized. We recommend:
Firefox 10 or better;
Google Chrome 4 or better;
Opera 9 or better;
Safari 4 or better;
Internet Explorer 8 or better. (IE7 is not recommended.)
For Mac users: Safari 4 or better, Firefox 10 or better; Opera 9 or better.
For the essential contact information, check the page on our Regional Support Centers (or, to see the
entire statewide crew, check the SABES Staff Directory) and then... take a look around our site.
Tell us what you think, tell us what you do, tell us what you need! That's why we're here.