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High Desert Report


A quarterly economic overview

Programs For Success Continued

are Apple Valley, Baker Valley, Barstow, Hesperia, Lucerne Valley, Morongo, Needles, Silver Valley, Snowline, Trona, and Victor Valley. Offering some 125 classes from automotive repair to video production, more than 21,000 students countywide are enrolled in County Schools’ ROP programs. ROP instructors are specialists from business and industry chosen for their expertise and experience in their particular subject field. Each instructor is credentialed by the California Teaching Commission. Employers support the ROP in a variety of ways. Through their participation on advisory committees, business leaders assist in verifying local labor market demand, determining curriculum content, providing expert consultants, and recommending qualified instructors. In addition, employers provide facilities, equipment, and promote student job placement. School Safety Because high school dropouts are more likely to commit crimes than their peers with a high school diploma, addressing the reasons our young people drop out of school also helps to eradicate truancy, juvenile crime, and unsafe school environments. The Gangs & Drugs regional task forces have been meeting for a year now and have developed specific short and long term goals. As a result, there is a new juvenile court in the West End, which held its first hearing last month. In the High Desert, strong partnerships have been developed with the Sheriff’s Department, to support the rural areas that do not have their own police departments. The Let’s End Truancy (LET) Program has received state and national recognition. As a result of LET and countywide School Accountability Review Board (SARB) trainings, reporting of truancies has improved and all but three small districts have SARB. Last year, five school districts

in the county – including Victor Valley and Hesperia in the High Desert – were named SARB model statewide programs. That distinction was given to only eight districts statewide. Our services in programs such as Coordinated Health, Foster Youth and Homeless Education have increased 10-fold. Working with our interagency partners in law enforcement, juvenile justice and social service, we’re targeting student and family needs to grow healthy schools and communities. With a grant from the Center for Disease Control, our office is pleased to be one of only three counties in the state to be awarded funds to implement a Coordinated School Health Model program with pilot districts and social service agencies to bring services to the schoolhouse door for students and families. If we can help by taking the social issues off the table for students, they can better focus on their schoolwork. State Budget Outlook There will be no relief from the poor economic conditions that have plagued much of the nation and especially California in recent years. That was evident following Gov. Schwarzenegger’s budget proposal for the 2010-11 fiscal year. For public education, the outlook remains bleak. Public schools are proposed to take a $1.7-billion hit, the majority of which is proposed to come from revenue limit funding. This equates to roughly a $200 per student reduction for the next fiscal year. This is on top of a current year per pupil reduction, equaling about $900 per student. These budget cuts threaten efforts to sustain improvement and reform, and erode the conditions that support teaching and learning. The current budget proposal also relies on nearly $7 billion of aid from federal government-assistance that already is proving to be unrealistic.

After suffering some $17 billion in cuts during the past two years, this may be the most difficult budget year yet for K-12 education. Already, we’re seeing districts proposing cuts they feel they will have to make to balance their future budgets. Our commitment at County Schools is ongoing support to our districts during these uncertain financial times. The 420,000 students in the county face the prospects of having more crowded classrooms, reduced programs in the arts and athletics, and fewer services offered. Several research studies conducted in this state on school finance point to the need for a new approach, a stable approach-to funding California’s public schools. It’s time. We are jeopardizing the future of California’s workforce and economy. Making Every One Count What educators contribute daily to the life of a child matters deeply. What each of us does to support them and our students matters greatly. Every one counts in the life of a child: • Every educator; • Every business partner; • Every labor leader; • Every community member; • Every clergyman; • Every parent, brother and sister; every family member. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” As an educator, these words have profound meaning to me, especially in these challenging times for public education. I am a firm believer in the opportunities we can provide through public education, and I will continue to be a voice that is heard in support of all students in our county and making sure they have every opportunity to achieve academically.

The Bradco High Desert Report 760.951.5111 • Fax: 760.951.5113 • • email:

46th Edition of the Bradco High Desert Report  

Inside This Issue During the last quarter, we have now made this newsletter available to over 7,300 Southern California based commercial, in...

46th Edition of the Bradco High Desert Report  

Inside This Issue During the last quarter, we have now made this newsletter available to over 7,300 Southern California based commercial, in...