The First Adult Charter School Opened in D.C. in 1998, Not Today

(Updated Below)

From today’s POLITICO Morning Education:

FIRST ADULT CHARTER SCHOOL OPENS IN D.C. — The first adult charter school in Washington, D.C. to offer educational services and skills training opens today. The Community College Preparatory Academy teamed up with Pearson to help adults move from high school into postsecondary education and careers. The school plans to serve about 150 students in its first year and up to 300 students by its third year.

The news that D.C. is welcoming its first adult charter school today will certainly be of interest to these guys, who got their charter way back in 1998. Not a big deal, but it’s important to recognize that charters in D.C. have been serving adults for quite some time.

More on D.C. charters and adult education here.

UPDATE 9/18/13: Politico has clarified their story, noting that the Community College Preparatory Academy is the first charter school to offer adult education in Southeast D.C.

UPDATE 9/18/13 (2): Fixed link to the Carlos Rosario School.

Here’s an Idea for D.C.’s New One City Fund – Use It to Address the Lack of Diversity on Nonprofit Boards

From a May 5th article in the Chronicle of Philanthropy on how racial bias impedes diversity at nonprofits:

A 2010 Urban Institute report found that people of color are underrepresented on nonprofit boards in the Baltimore-Washington area, given their share in the region’s population. The report found that 77 percent of nonprofit board members in the area are white, and some boards—24 percent of them—are completely made up of white people. (my emphasis)

Mayor Gray’s proposed One City Fund (which includes, as one if its goals, “growing and diversifying our economy”) could be a great opportunity to do something about this, by awarding grants to nonprofits in D.C. that either have diverse leadership in place, or at least can demonstrate that they have a clear commitment to do so. Here’s a group that has done some good work on this issue.

The “Least Surprising Policy Position Ever”

This is old news, but I was amused by Michael Neibauer’s lede in this January 30th article for the Washington Business Journal on Walmart’s opposition to a proposed living wage law in D.C.:

In the least surprising policy position ever, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will oppose D.C. Council legislation that would force it, and other big box retailers, to pay their employees a living wage.

Reading this article I was reminded of a statement provided to Neibauer for another Journal article back on August 28th, 2012:

“Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are dedicated to continuing and broadening our support of local organizations and important local initiatives across D.C., particularly in the critical areas of workforce development and economic opportunity, education, health & wellness and sustainability.” (my emphasis)

Grandparents and Adult Education

In many low income communities, grandparents raising children are a critically under appreciated issue. Legislation like this that supports grandparent caregivers makes sense, but as the author points out, it’s just a small piece of the kind of investment needed.

This is another gap issue that those of us involved in adult education policy need to think about as our work becomes increasingly focused on those in the workforce. Some grandparent caregivers in low-income communities have limited literacy skills, and I think it’s safe to assume that a reasonably significant proportion of them are not in the workforce, or going back to it anytime soon, if ever. But wouldn’t parenting classes and mental health programs for this population be more successful if we also increased their literacy skills? Does integrating adult education into parenting classes for those individuals makes sense? If the answer is yes, then what is our strategy for increasing adult education resources for these individuals?