Sunday, September 8, 2013

Update Riverside: Reason for Concern & Action

The Press-Enterprise article, "Riverside: Adult School Programs Slashed" is cause for great concern.

Even though the MOE (Maintenance of Effort) clause stipulates that if an Adult School was open in 2012, it must be open now and at the same funding level, the District has cut Adult Ed programs.

Paul Steenhausen of the Legislative Analyst’s Office in Sacramento, said...    “They’re not allowed to spend less,” said Steenhausen, whose office provides nonpartisan fiscal and policy analysis for the Legislature. If they do, he said, they could be in violation.             (From the PE Article)

Reductions at the Riverside Adult School, from 2012 to 2013, include:

ENROLLMENT: From 1,200 to 185


BUDGET: $3.6 million to $1.8 million

STAFF: 52 to 19

(Statistics from PE Article)

Even though we the people of California, including many Adult Education students, staff, and supporters passed Prop 30...

Even though the Legislature created the Maintenance of Effort clause to ensure the survival of Adult Schools...

Even though Adult Education is wanted and needed in Riverside, where 24% of the population is foreign-born and 15% lives under the poverty level...

The District has made these cuts.

Click the "read more" link to learn more.


And what does this mean for other Adult Schools around California?

And most importantly, what now?

Folks who live in the Riverside area can contact the RUSD School Board, their local City Council, their State Legislators, the Adult Education Office of the California Department of Education, and the CCAE - "the voice of Adult Education."

The Riverside Unified School District School Board

Edsource article showing internal and external pressures on large school districts in California.  You can click on Riverside (or any other city listed) to see poverty, class size, enrollment, layoffs, and other stats

Riverside City Council

Assembly Member Jose Medina - a strong supporter of Adult Education and a former Adult School teacher.

State Senator Richard Roth

Adult Education Office of the California Department of Education

Riverside is in Region 10 of the CDE Adult Education Division

10 - RIMS: Riverside, San Bernardino
Young, Myra

CCAE - California Council of Adult Ed - their home page includes the Top Ten Reasons Why A School District Should Offer Adult Education Within The New Consortium System.

CCAE Southern Section - Riverside is in this chapter of CCAE

The Riverside community can let their friends, neighbors, co-workers, and church, mosque, and temple members know what is happening.   They can make phone calls, send emails, and start petitions. 

They can look to United Adult Students and La Educacion for inspiration. 

They can contact academics at in the UC Riverside Graduate School of Education for ideas, resources and support.

They can contact Catholic Charities and La Raza and MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund) and HOPE  (Hispanas Organized for Political Equality).

All of us need to stay alert and aware to what is happening to the Adult Schools and Adult Education programs in our local areas - and across the state.

We are still inside the chrysalis.  Adult Education is still vulnerable.  There is still work to be done.

Yes, this is a set back.

Yes, it's been five years now since this all started with the Crash on Wall Street.

Yes, this is taking a long time and it's not easy.

It calls for patience, persistence, and effort.

But our people, our state, our future are worth too much to quit now.

We need to do this - and we can. 

That's the good news, actually.

There's a job to be done and it's a job worth doing and we have the power to do it and the reward is great.

It's also a lot easier when we do it together.

Please take a moment to take action on behalf of Riverside Adult School and/or Adult Education in your local area or across the state. Get involved.  Make a phone call.  Send an email. Find out what's happening at your local Adult School as we move into the new Regional Consortia system.  Is everything okay? 

In our action - or inaction - we are shaping the future of Adult Education.

What future do we want?

Riverside Adult School helping students - and the community - achieve success

Riverside Adult School students standing up for Adult Ed in June 2013.
Photo credit: Dana Straehly, Press Enterprise


Dalia Solis, 75, right, with daughter Christina Solis, 34, who has Down syndrome, were surprised to learn that Life School was eliminated. It was part of cuts at the Riverside Adult School.
Photo Credit:  Terry Peirson, Staff Photographer,  Press Enterprise

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