On behalf of Oakland’s family literacy programs, student Malak Alsabahi stood at the podium and asked the school board not to cut adult education. Fellow supporters held paintings of Yemeni women while Alsabahi spoke, representing classmates who could not be there at the school board meeting Wednesday.
The Crucible’s second Hot Couture: A Fusion of Fashion and Fire will run on Friday and Saturday evenings, January 11 and 12. The show features works created by nine teams of fashion designers and artists who have partnered to make fashion pieces out of industrial arts materials.
At the event held at Oakland City Hall on Saturday, people seeking general information or with specific questions about tax and estate or insurance and benefit planning signed up for 15-minute sessions to speak with certified financial planners who volunteered their services at the fifth annual Oakland Financial Planning Day.
Twenty-five years ago, Norma Rodriguez went to a training session for the Child Assault Prevention Training Center. When she agreed to participate in the session, she didn’t realize that two weeks of learning how to prevent and recognize child abuse would change her life. She didn’t know that intense training would soon become her career.
As parents, students and teachers at Oakland schools grapple with the school board’s recent decision to close five elementary schools, the Adult and Career Education program in the district has already come to terms with cuts that closed two campuses and decimated the program’s funding.
In June, Oakland’s last two adult schools—out of five the city once supported—closed their doors. And at the start of this school year, the district announced it would no longer offer English as a Second Language (ESL) classes to adults.
Like Oakland Unified School District’s K-12 system, Adult Education is facing massive cuts and administrators have had to narrow the program’s focus to the district’s highest needs: foundational literacy, basic skills and workforce training.