Adult Education: Learn More

Adult Education: Learn More

Oakland’s public schools are currently being run by State Administrator Randolph Ward. After shutting down at least ten schools across the city, and restructuring others as semi-public charter schools, Ward has now proposed shutting down the entire Oakland Adult Education program.

Under Dr. Ward’s plan, 25,000 – 30,000 adults who rely on Adult Education for English and other language classes, computer and job training, high school equivalency diplomas, senior citizen programs, and more would be left in the lurch — including the city’s only free English as a Second Language classes. Hundreds of teachers, clerical workers, custodians, and other employees would lose their jobs.

The entire adult education program in Oakland may be closed down as of June 30th of this year. Many Adult Education teachers in Oakland received a notice on Feb. 18th stating that if class attendance falls below 14 students, that class will be considered for immediate closure.

Ward claims that eliminating the program may prevent cost overruns that could draw money away from K-12 schools. He proposed that the Peralta community college system take responsibility for adult education in Oakland, but reports indicate that Peralta would be hard-pressed to meet demand. Ward said the district might keep its adult education program if unions agree to cost-saving measures at the bargaining table, leading observers to speculate that he was cynically using the threatened cutbacks as leverage with union negotiators.

A town hall meeting to defend public education has been called for, Tuesday, March 8th, 6-8 p.m. at the First Congregational Church, 2501 Harrison St.

For more information, see this report on Indybay and this Oakland Tribune article.

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