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Reco WilliamsA Ford Foundation grant to the Syracuse Research Corporation in 1972 launched a study to discover the reasons why the “over 25” adult population was not earning their credential through existing high school completion programs.  Adults interviewed indicated that:

  • Adult education class schedules were not compatible with adult responsibilities;
  • Content did not relate to real life experiences; and
  • Multiple choice, paper-pencil test format was too limiting.

In response, the National External Diploma Program (NEDP) was created and launched in Syracuse, New York in 1975. Because of the success of NEDP for adults in New York, the program expanded to other states as an alternative option for adults to earn a high school diploma. In 1979, the U.S. Department of Education, through the National Diffusion Network (NDN) recognized the NEDP as an exemplary program worthy of national dissemination.  On July 1, 2006, CASAS – Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment Systems – with assistance from the Connecticut, Maryland, and New York State Departments of Education – acquired the rights to the NEDP.


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