About Learning Lab

Learning Lab is a literacy education center for low-income adults and families with young children. Instruction is individualized, based on students’ needs and goals. Adult students may work on basic skills including math, reading, writing, spelling, and, for many, English language learning.  Students may also prepare for GED and citizenship tests. All classes include one-on-one tutoring and the use of educational software. In the family program, while parents work on their literacy skills, their preschool children engage in fun, literacy-based learning activities in their own classroom, so they are better prepared for school. As part of each session, parents work with their children to understand how to support their child’s learning at home and in school.

Vision & Mission

Vision Statement

Strengthening our community through literacy for all.

Mission Statement

To teach and encourage adults who struggle with literacy, help families discover the joy of learning so all children start kindergarten ready to read, create hope for brighter futures and build a stronger, more self-sufficient, and engaged community for all of us.


In 1991, Learning Lab began as an adult literacy project of the Junior League of Boise to address the needs of the workforce of the future. Classes began on the 4th floor of the Boise Public Library!, but as the number of volunteers and students increased rapidly, more space was needed. Within a few years, we added a family literacy program where adult students could bring their young children with them and learn together. With generous financial support from the community, a second facility, The Anna Margaret Jones Center for Learning, was opened in Garden City in 2006. In 2014, classes expanded to include the Library! at Cole & Ustick. In 2016, a new Outreach program began to offer classes for low-income neighborhood apartments. Over the past 28 years, we have provided basic skills education to more than 4,000 students.

Our Team

  • Monique Smith, Executive Director
  • Steph Carlson, Development Officer
  • Cassie Angelos, Business Manager
  • Jennifer Panitch, Administrative Assistant
  • Gloria Gude, Education Program & Enrollment Coordinator
  • Lila Cabrera, Adult Educator
  • Mary Jane Fields, Volunteer Coordinator & Adult Educator
  • Renee Johns, Adult Educator
  • Kimberly Ward, Adult Educator
  • Erika Warner, Adult Educator
  • Joy Hansel, Family Literacy Coordinator & Preschool Educator
  • Katie Windsor, Preschool Educator
  • Allison Yawczak, Infant/Toddler Educator
  • Stephanie Booe, Early Childhood Assistant