Congresswoman Scanlon Visits Literacy Classrooms

Mary Gay Scanlon and literacy students

Press Release of January 23, 2020

Literacy Students ask questions of U.S. Congress Member Mary Gay Scanlon.
Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon hears about students’ goals and answers questions about the role of a Congress member during a recent visit to an ESL classroom at the Delaware County Literacy Council.

Adult students from the Delaware County Literacy Council (DCLC) received a firsthand lesson in civics when U.S. Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon visited their classes this week.

Scanlon visited three English as a Second Language (ESL) classes and one GED® preparation class, talking with students about their goals and answering questions about her role representing the Fifth Congressional District in Pennsylvania.

In a GED® preparation class, Scanlon listened to adults as they shared what they hoped to do once they earned their GED®, such as become a social worker, start a business, or enroll in college.

She congratulated the students for their efforts, saying, “You’re here. You’re taking steps to reach your goals.”

In an intermediate ESL class, Scanlon was asked about her history of helping immigrants.

Scanlon mentioned that before being elected, she spent 15 years helping immigrants with legal concerns. She cited immigration issues as “one of the reasons I ran for office.”

Scanlon also answered questions about her role as a Congress member, saying “My job is to represent the people, the 715,000 people who live in the district.”

In her remarks to students, Scanlon emphasized the upcoming 2020 U.S. Census, which launches on April 1st. “We’re working really hard to make sure everybody fills out the census, which counts citizens, noncitizens, and children, because so much of our public funding goes through the census,” she explained.

In addition to classroom visits, Scanlon also learned about DCLC’s programs and funding streams from Kate McGeever, Executive Director of DCLC. DCLC’s classes and employment services for local adults are funded by the Federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.

Scanlon’s classroom visits generated lots of excitement and discussion about the functions of government among DCLC’s adult students.

“I enjoyed seeing her. She is a strong woman who is working hard for us,” said Olga Popova of Aston, an ESL student who is originally from Russia.

The Delaware County Literacy Council helps adults develop reading, writing, math, and English language skills to thrive in the workplace and community. To learn more or to get involved, visit