Sunday, August 18, 2013

Minds and Hearts of Our Own

The budget crisis that devastated Adult Education and nearly wiped out K12 Adult Schools left many school buildings, which once served thousands of Adult School students, empty.  Or to put it another way, the budget crisis freed up a lot of real estate.

Now that crisis is over - sort of.  We are in the planning stages for the new Regional Consortia system.   This is the new system where K12 Adult Schools, Community Colleges, Jails & Prisons, and any other Adult Ed providers will work together in their regions to decide what Adult Ed is needed and who needs it and who will provide it.

In 2015, there will be 500 million dollars for these Regional Consortia.

In the meantime?  There is some freed up real estate. 

And what happens to freed up real estate?  Good question.

In National City, a city on the US side of the border with Mexico, maybe some renting out of the space to Alliant International University, a private university, making for what could be called the privatization of public education.

Or not.

Click the "read more" link to learn more.

Not if others feel as Chamber of Commerce member Brian Clapper does:

Brian Clapper, who is a director on the National City Chamber of Commerce, said in an August 14 interview that he objected to this “hurry up” meeting. “The process has not at all been transparent; all the cards aren’t on the table.
“We need this adult center. Students in our community need the classes to learn English, to gain citizenship, to become medical assistants, to take math courses. Why are they pushing this on the second lowest economically sound city in the county? Why are they pushing this down our throats?”
Clapper says he was recently warned by another member of the chamber that he better go along with allowing Alliant into the Adult Center. His response was, “I have a mind and a heart of my own.”

Read the full San Diego Reader story here.

Minds, hearts... yes, thank you, Mr. Clapper for reminding us:  we have them.

And we need to use them, as we make preparation for the new Regional Consortia.

What do we want?

What are the needs in our local areas?

How best can we meet those needs?

Who will meet those needs?  And how?

Please share your own ideas on this short questionnaire and pass it along to others.

(Spanish translation coming soon.)

Consider holding, as Assembly Member Weber has suggested, public forums where people can discuss what is needed for the future of Adult Education.

This is our state, our people, our system of public education.

What do we want for it?

Time to use our minds and hearts to find out.

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