Monday, July 1, 2013

CCAE Communicator - July 2013

CCAE - California Council for Adult Education - is the only organization representing all who care about Adult Ed:  Students, Support Staff, Teachers, Administrators, and Community Members.
Their  website bills them as "The Voice of Adult Ed in California" and indeed, they have been an important voice in Sacramento, speaking up about the value and necessity of Adult Education and carrying the message that...   Adult Education Matters!
Here's the latest from CCAE, including messages and updates from the new CCAE State President Larriann Torrez, outgoing President Chris Nelson, and CCAE Legislative Analyst Dawn Koepke.
More about CCAE membership in a separate blog post. 

Hit the "Read More" link for the update.

Message from the President 
Larriann Torrez
Board President
Follow me on Twitter @ccaeprez
I am honored to have the opportunity to serve as your CCAE State President for the 2013-2015 years. This school year is especially exciting as CCAE celebrates its 70th anniversary. What a milestone accomplishment for CCAE. We could not have accomplished what we have without the work of all our current and past leaders.
I want to thank our past CCAE President Chris Nelson and the board for all of their hard work and dedication they have given to CCAE. They have done an excellent job in fighting for adult education and dedicated funding. Although we have funding for two years, I look forward to continuing the fight and keeping adult education around now and after the two years.
Our board this year continues to be strong in leadership and I am happy to be working with such a strong team that includes our State Executive Board representatives Dr. Sue Lytle Gilmore, President Elect; Kathy Brendzal, Secretary; Chris Nelson, Past President; Adriana Sanchez-Aldana, Member-at-Large; and Darlene Neilsen, Member-at-Large. The Board also includes representatives from all six sections of California, other adult education partners, and our contract partners that include our Executive Director, Jerry Green; Legislative Analyst, Dawn Koepke; Financial Manager, Chesty Peterson; and Membership Coordinator, Sharon Bonney, Bonney Business Solutions.  
As CCAE enters the uncharted waters of adult education, I encourage everyone to build relationships with local and state officials and as well as to continue promoting CCAE so that we can continue our voyage.
Larriann Torrez, President
Office: 559-686-0225

Past President's Remarks  
Chis Nelson
Past President
As I mentioned in the last issue of The Communicator, we have done some amazing work over the course of the past two years.  We are not yet out of the woods but I think we have turned a corner.  As your Past President, I will be assisting our new President with Legislative affairs for the next few months through the end of the legislative session this fall.  We will be keeping a watchful eye to be sure that Adult schools do not close and working with Senator Liu on SB 173.  We will also be looking at any other issues that might impact Adult Education this year.   I really believe now that we are on the right track and are better positioned for continued funding for K-12 Districts that provide Adult Education.

Legislative Update 
Dawn Koepke
Legislative Liaison/Analyst
SB 173 (Liu) - Passed Assembly Education Committee
Having passed the Senate in May, SB 173 was sent to the Assembly for consideration.  This week it was heard in the Assembly Education Committee where it passed out with bipartisan support and no "NO" votes.
Also of note, amendments were taken in Committee to push out the implementation date to coincide with the two-year MOU and regional consortia pieces of the budget proposal.  This delay will allow for a two-year timeframe to work with community partners, the field, and Legislature to chart our next steps, how to sustain the programs outside the core and more.  There will be no need to make any programmatic changes in the next two years.  Importantly, this has never been about throwing any particular program or student population under the bus.  To the contrary we are fighting hard to ensure that we are still able to provide classes and services for these students, but understanding we have to get creative and continue developing our local partnerships to help backfill funding.  This is not an insurmountable task. Multiple adult schools across the state are already funding these programs with other resources as a result of categorical flexibility and other schools have closed entirely or have cut their offerings drastically. 
Recall, SB 173 is one piece of the puzzle relative to adult education reform and our efforts to work toward longer-term stability.  While we appreciate the tremendous trepidation and concern over any reform and specifically with regard to SB 173's provisions, we firmly believe that these are steps we must take in order to ensure adult education in the K-12 system continues to exist at all.  As you well know, these are but a few of the reforms being called for in the last couple of years by the CDE Strategic Plan, LAO report, and Brown Administration.  While change is certainly difficult, CCAE and CAEAA have approached this proposal with the sole goal of stabilizing K-12 adult education so that we have something to rebuild.  As you know, the Brown Administration is continuing the pressure of reform and is very interested in a stronger governance role for the CCC over our programs.  Given this, we are in a position to either work together where we can or get rolled entirely.  
Is this proposal perfect? isn't perfect.  We're continuing to work with CDE, the LAO and legislative staff to figure out how to mitigate as many of the concerns as possible.  The question that we all need to ask ourselves, however, is whether we want to continue to exist at all lest we continue to be hammered by the Administration who would rather see the CCC take us over entirely anyway.  And I would remind you that Governor Brown isn't leaving office anytime soon and is expected to prevail in his next election in 2014.  We must show a commitment to reform and collaboration with the CCCs - be a team player - or we will be railroaded.  The Governor has won virtually every major policy battle that he has undertaken to date.  It may have taken a year or two, but he is a winner.  In this regard, I would urge caution for the longer term.  Again, this isn't about dumping other programs, but becoming more creative on the funding and categorization side to ensure stability for the core programs and those that are important to our communities.  
Budget Update
As you know, the Governor has signed the main budget proposal and the majority of budget trailer bills.  Among the trailer bills signed is one that authorizes and funds regional consortia between K-12 based adult schools and the CCCs for the next two years with $25 million.  The consortia will be charged with planning around the refocused core program areas as originally proposed in the Governor's budget plans - yet another indication that the refocusing of core program areas isn't going away.  As previously mentioned, it is going to be critical for the field to take the regional consortia effort by storm. 
As it relates to the LCFF trailer bill, which contains our two-year MOU, it has yet to be signed by the Governor.  Once it is signed, school districts would be required to fund adult education programs at their FY 12-13 levels for the next two-years to allow for the regional consortia to see what the next steps might look like.  We've heard from a number of districts that their boards and superintendents are furious and have even threatened to not follow the law.  Importantly, the law doesn't allow school districts an option.  It is the law and they must follow it.  Period.
More to come once the Governor signs the trailer bill....  Stay tuned....

Legislative Interaction Results 
Let us know about your
legislative efforts here.
Thank you to our members that completed the Legislative Interaction Log.

We are pleased to share the following results by section:
Bay section: 15.9%
Central section: 13.6%
LAM section: 0%
Northern section: 6.8%
Southern section: 29.5%
South Coast section: 34.1%

56% of respondents met face to face with their legislators, while 22% sent emails, and the remainder utilized other means to connect with their legislators.

Conference Testimonials
Special thanks to cochairs Dennis Flynn and Branka Marcetta for running an outstanding conference!
"Conference staff and volunteers were great!"

"I was impressed by CCAE's professionalism and political action."

"WOW! CCAE knows how to put on a GREAT conference with a great variety of workshops!"

"Great execution of theme. I like how everything was pretty much in the same place and easy to negotiate. Loved the inclusion of meals in the registration. Really well done! Kudos to the team!"

"The whole event was exceptionally well organized. The keynote speakers were informative, and the workshops were useful and clearly presented. The social gatherings were fun in a professional setting. The hotel was beautiful, and everyone was extremely friendly and helpful."

Read more comments here.

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