Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Getting to the Finish

This is it, folks.  The last leg of our marathon.

The money for K12 Adult Schools runs out in June of 2015.

We have until January - really, it needs to happen before then - to convince Governor Brown, the Department of Finance and the Legislature that K12 Adult Schools need their own secure funding source.  Yes, we have a new Regional Consortia system.  But without secure funding, the future is mightily uncertain for K12 Adult Schools.

Everyone who cares about Adult Ed and K12 Adult Schools - grassroots groups, CCAE, CFT, CTA, UTLA, etc. - is going to be doing all they can - calling, visiting, and emailing the Gov, DOF, and Legislators, pulling together NASCAR letters, connecting with community and communicating in creative ways the message:

Adult Education matters!

K12 Adult Schools need their own secure funding!

And for many of us:  Keep the mission of Adult Ed broad! 

Strategies may differ slightly but the end goal is the same: 

A good future for our people
         through good public Adult Education.

Here's a budget timeline kindly provided by CCAE:

Fiscal Year 15-16 Budget Timeline

July 1, 2014 Fiscal Year 14-15 Budget Takes Effect

July – December 2014 Development of the Governor’s FY 15-16 Budget Proposal

State & Local-Based Adult Education Advocacy

Public Relations Campaign

October 1, 2014 Deadline for Local Meetings & Nascar Letters to be Submitted

November 4, 2014 General Election

December 1, 2014 Beginning of 2015-16 Legislative Session

January 5, 2015 Legislature Reconvenes for 2015-16 Legislative Session

January 10, 2015 Release of the Governor’s FY 15-16 Budget Plan

(within a couple days or so)

January – May 2015 Budget Subcommittee Hearings & Decision-Making

March 15, 2015 School District Lay Off Notice Deadline

March 24, 2015 CCAE & CAEAA Leg Day at the Capitol

**Budget Advocacy & Focus – Be There, Strength in Numbers!

June 15, 2015 Constitutional Legislative Budget Deadline

July 1, 2015 FY 15-16 Budget Takes Effect

Here are some of the strategies for getting us to our goal:

*  A4CAS's - Alliance for California Adult School's - strategy

CCAE's  (California Council of Adult Education) - strategy

CFT's (California Federation of Teachers Union) strategy

CTA's (California Teacher Association) strategy

NLLB's (No Lawmaker Left Behind) strategy (part of A4CAS)

UTLA's (United Teachers of Los Angeles) strategy

Full disclosure:   I work with A4CAS (Alliance for California Adult School).  I am on the steering committee for NLLB (No Lawmaker Left Behind).    I am a member of CFT (California Federation of Teachers union) and CCAE (California Council of Adult Education).   And I work at San Mateo Adult School.

If you look closely you will see while the approaches may differ in style and scope they all have the following things in common:

* Connect with the Governor and Legislature
* Get the message out that Adult Education matters
* Stories and data - heart and mind - both are important
* K12 Adult Schools need their own wallet

SMAS Student Leader Hitomi getting the message out:
K12 Adult Schools need secure funding!

My personal thoughts and observations:

* Wearing Red for Adult Ed on Tuesdays - unifies & amplifies
* Being organized in multiple ways - hard but helpful
* Sharing data so that all can access and use for good - multiplies the good
* Connecting with community, press, legislature - turns the tide
* Respecting different approaches - sustains
* Staying out of blame and accusation - rejuvenates
* Staying in support and respect - strengthens
* Understanding we share the goal of saving and strengthening public Adult Education because we share the larger goal of wanting a good future for our people - empowers

* And when you're tired and worn out, consider these guys:

AP Photo/Elise Amendola
Jeff Glasbrenner, Andre Slay and Chris Madison cross the finish line of the Boston Marathon 2014.
Glasbrenner ran Boston in 2013 but didn't get to finish because of the bombings.

We can do this. 
Yes, together, we most definitely can.

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