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Feather River Adult Education
One in five California adults lacks a high school diploma, and half of these adults have less than a ninth-grade education. In Plumas County, fewer than 25 out of 100 residents have a bachelor’s degree or higher, and nearly 2,600 Plumas County residents live below the poverty line. Season employment in a mountain region is a serious challenge, and in Plumas, the number of residents employed seasonally regularly decreases approximately 15% between summer (August) and winter (February).
The state and federal governments have determined that, in collaboration with workforce development initiatives, current adult education programs are among the best solutions to these education and employment challenges. According to the California Department of Education (CDE), each year state and federal funding provides services to more than one million adult learners. These services are provided via a network of school districts, community colleges, community or faith-based organizations, volunteer literacy organizations, public or private nonprofit agencies, public libraries, correctional facilities, and state agencies. Through this funding and service network, adult learners (eighteen years old or more) may acquire the education and skills to complete in the global economy and establish a higher quality of life.
In 2013-14, California appropriated $25 million to the California Community College Chancellors Office (CCCCO) to allocate funding for two-year planning and implementation grants. The funds were provided to eligible consortia for the purpose of developing regional plans for adult education. The Feather River Consortium was formed in 2014-15, during which a Regional Comprehensive Plan for adult education in Plumas County was developed. The Consortium consists of three Member organizations (FRC, PUSD and PCOE), and FRC was designated as the Consortium’s fiscal agent.
OnRamp’s primary goals are to (1) develop a funding plan that addresses the gaps in services; (2) promote completion of high school diploma and/or equivalency, and (3) strengthen the local field of workforce and life skills preparation available to adult learners. Unlike other adult education programs in the state, Plumas County’s is uniquely community-based, which means that the Consortium is funding local to provide most of the services and instructional programs for the county’s adult learners.