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Editorial:

Schools need your help

June 11, 2009

It’s graduation time in Huntington Beach, and this week, at least, schools can take a momentary break from budget woes and celebrate another class moving on. But it won’t be a long break. Every level of education is hurting for funding, from elementary school through college, and with the economy in a rut both statewide and nationwide, the light at the end of the tunnel looks pretty distant.

The Huntington Beach City School District, at a meeting this week, discussed eliminating staff and increasing kindergarten through second-grade class sizes to 30 students per teacher. The Huntington Beach Union High School District, eyeing $13.3 million in cuts, is looking to trim summer school programs in the near future. Golden West College has cut sessions and is packing students into the remaining ones.

If anyone is going to come to the districts’ aid in the next few months, it likely won’t be the state, particularly after the losses in the May special election. So if anyone in the community wants to lend schools a hand, we encourage them to step forward now.

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Every comprehensive campus in the high school district has a volunteer (or “VIP”) coordinator who oversees newsletters, school functions and other activities. Volunteers can assist elementary schools in countless ways. At Golden West College, residents can volunteer to be tutors or mentors. And the Golden West College Foundation, which provides scholarships for students, is always in need of funding.

Last month, an anonymous man in the community donated $5,000 to Huntington Beach’s children’s libraries to make up for funds lost due to counterfeit tickets to the Taste of Huntington Beach. Clearly, even during a recession, our community has generous residents who are willing to give. Let’s hope our schools see some of that philanthropy during a time when the books are tight.


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