May 21, 2012
Vol.3, No.9
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Governor Brown Releases Revised State Budget

May Revise

Governor Jerry Brown released his May Revise budget proposal outlining over $4 billion in additional cuts to close what is now a $15.7 billion deficit (up from $9 billion in January). The revised budget slashes spending in almost every part of government, but proposes a 16 percent increase in funding for K-12 education, subject to voter approval of the Governor's tax increase measure in November. State funding for K-12 schools would increase from $29.3 billion in last year's budget to $34.0 billion by the end of 2013.

"We can't balance the budget with cuts alone; that would just further undermine our public schools," said Governor Brown. "The budget I am proposing will boost funding for education, protect public safety and prevent an even deeper round of trigger cuts."

Read the full story.

New Research Report on Improving Adult Literacy Instruction

Literacy Instruction

The National Research Council (NRC) (www) has released a new report, Improving Adult Literacy Instruction: Options for Practice and Research (www). The report recommends a program of research and innovation to gain a better understanding of adult literacy learners, improve instruction, and create the supports adults need for learning and achievement. It identifies factors that affect literacy development in adolescence and adulthood and examines their implications for strengthening literacy instruction for this population. It also discusses technologies that show promise for supporting adult literacy learners.

Regarding policy recommendations, the report recommends four next steps to improve adult literacy instruction in the U.S., including expanding the infrastructure for adult literacy education, ensuring that professional development and technical assistance are widely available, and conducting further research into effective literacy instruction.

Read more and register for the May 30 Webcast.

Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) Report on District Spending

Cutting strings on moeny

The Legislative Analyst's Office (LAO), an independent agency that provides information to the legislature on policy issues, has issued its latest three year report, Update on School District Finance in California (PDF). The report analyzes responses to a survey sent to all districts by the LAO. The report notes that per pupil spending has been reduced by five percent between 2007-08 and 2010-11, and that districts have had to make even deeper cuts in some cases to accommodate increasing costs for salaries and health benefits. Most districts have reduced both teaching and classified staff, increased class size, and reduced the number of days of instruction. The report focuses on categorical flexibility and the results of implementing this policy starting in 2009-10.

Read more and download the report.

Nominate a Former Student for "Students Succeed"

CA Adult Education Students Succeed

The California Adult Education Students Succeed project (www) recognizes former adult education students who have completed their courses and met some or many of their life goals. The Web site offers the stories and photos of 187 former adult learners from 92 different adult education agencies who have success stories to tell. Many of these stories are accompanied by short videos telling the story with interviews from the former student, their teachers and administrators, family members and others.

Although the Students Succeed project was not active this year, the Adult Education Council of the Association of California School Administrators has asked OTAN to produce two new Students Succeed stories for the ACSA Leadership Summit in November in San Diego. Therefore, we are looking for nominations from southern California adult education programs of individuals who would be able to attend the conference luncheon on Saturday, November 10, 2012 to receive the award.

Read more and access the nomination form. Nominations are due by June 15, 2012.

New OTAN Online Tool for Teachers

TPACK
Image courtesy of TPACK.

OTAN has long provided resources on our Web site for teachers to use in the classroom. Now we have released a new tool called Teaching with Technology. With this tool, a teacher can search for technology to use with a particular lesson. For example, a high school diploma instructor looking for biology resources might choose High School Diploma as the program area, then choose Biology under Science. Nine resources are found, one of which is the Virtual Frog Dissection site. Choosing that link provides a description of the site, suggested activities, and step-by-step instructions on how to use the site with students.

Read the full story here, or try it out at Teaching with Technology on OTAN.

Calendar

Find and register for training throughout California and conferences throughout the USA at the California Adult Education and Professional Development Web site (www).

Workshops

OTAN offers free online and face-to-face workshops to adult educators and staff throughout California. Workshops are planned to fit a wide variety of skill levels! Find out more at http://www.otan.us/training

Online

  • Interactive Whiteboards – Creating Student Activities (Promethean)
    05/24/12 – 3:00p – 4:30p
  • Simple Free Web Tools to Use with Your Students
    05/31/12 – 9:00a – 10:30a
  • Using Picture Dictionaries in the Multilevel ESL Classroom
    06/01/12 – 2:00p – 3:30p
  • Teaching Critical Thinking for the Internet
    06/07/12 – 10:00a – 11:30a
  • Orienting Students to Online Learning
    06/07/12 – 3:00p – 4:30p

View more and register for Webinars (www)

Face-to-Face Workshops

  • 06/01/12 – Creating Web Pages with Weebly
    9:00a – 12:00p @ Capistrano Adult School
  • 06/01/12 – Moodle: Create a Course Web Site
    9:00a – 12:00p @ Riverside Adult School

Find and register for workshops at the California Adult Education and Professional Development Web site. (www)

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