Monday, August 26, 2013

Update: Oakland Adult School

Oakland Adult School once served over 20,000 people.

The crisis that hit Adult Education, in particular K12 Adult Schools, nearly destroyed it.

But it didn't.  Not entirely.  A tiny core of programs survived, including the little engine that could, La Escuelita, and last May, motivated by a mighty cry from the community, the Oakland School Board voted to stand by those programs and keep them going.  Shortly after, Gov. Brown came out with his May Revise that brought new hope to K12 Adult Schools.

A good thing, because Oakland very much needs these programs.

Some facts that show why:

Hit the "read more" link to learn more.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

The National Coalition on Literacy Wants Your Ideas

The National Coalition on Literacy works to advance Adult Eduction, Family Literacy, and ESL in the USA.  They help the public understand the value of these programs and the need for more of them and more money to pay for them.  They make suggestions about public policy about Adult Education, Family Literacy and ESL. They serve as a resource on these issues on a national level.  (More here.)

In other words, on a national level, the NCL collects information about Adult Education, comes up with a vision about how it can be, and then shares that information and vision with Congress, Government Agencies, and the Adult Ed community in order to shape the future of Adult Education.

Now you can be part of that process through this short questionnaire.

Hit the "read more" link to learn more.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Got Perspective?

Public education, including Adult Education, is by, for and of the public (the people)

For that reason, I believe that the public should be part of deciding the future of Adult Education.

To that end, I am doing all I can to provide information about Adult Education

- what is it?
- how did we get here?
- where do we want to go from here?
- what are our options?

and to provide and promote spaces where people can share their ideas, hopes, experience, needs, and desires about Adult Education.

From time to time, I have featured specific "perspective" pieces - students, teachers, administrators sharing their perspectives from their experience.

You can read them here.

If you are interested in sharing your perspective on this blog,

hit the "read more" link to learn more

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.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Perspective: Joy-Lily (Amend 173)

Wednesday, August 14th, SB 173 will go before the Assembly Committee on Higher Education.
Unless amended, SB 173 will narrow the mission of Adult Education, eliminating Older Adults and Parent Education.   Older Adults and Parent Ed can continue, at district discretion, but only if funded through alternative sources. 
Many (not all) in the Adult Education community, want to see 173 amended.  (Full disclosure:  I do.)
Joy-Lily (Martha Herman), an Older Adults teacher at San Mateo Adult School, is one such person. 
She shares the letter she sent to the Higher Education Committee (below).
You, too, can share your opinions with the Higher Ed Committee. Click here for contact info.
Dear Committee Members,
Please add my voice to the call to include older adult education in the plans to revamp California's adult schools.

Click the "read more" link to read the rest of Joy-Lily's letter.

What Do You Want For Adult Ed in the Future?

We are in another chrysalis.

In two years, the new Regional Consortia will start up.

Adult Ed will be run by these Consortia.

They will decide what kind of Adult Ed is provided in their areas and who provides it and to whom.

What do we want for this future?

What do you want?

Now is the time to think about this.  To share our ideas. 

And then to share in the work to make it happen.

We know what happens when we don't share in things.  We know what happens when we are too busy, too tired, or just plain unwilling to get involved.

This is our future.

We need to be part of deciding what it looks like, what it feels like, for decades to come.

All of us.  Students, teachers, community members, administrators.  All of us need to be part of this.

All of us know something that is important to share.  

All of us have a piece of the puzzle because we are the puzzle.  We are the future.

The only real question is:  Do we go into it eyes open or eyes closed?

Please take a few minutes to think about what you want for Adult Ed and share your ideas and opinions in this questionnaire - then ask others to share theirs, too.

In this way, we can gather ideas and opinions from around the state so we make a system that serves the whole state.

Thank you.

Here's the questionnaire:

What do you want for Adult Ed in the future?