LANCASTER – In response to the growing local demand for Spanish language General Educational Development (G.E.D.) courses, the City of Lancaster has partnered with several entities including California State University of Long Beach (CSULB) and the Coalition for Human Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) to offer such courses at the Lancaster University Center.
“As the Antelope Valley grows in size and scope, we continually evolve the many services we provide for our residents,” said Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris. “General Educational Development programs pave the way for better jobs and a higher standard of living throughout the region.”
Until recently, there had only been one location where Spanish language G.E.D. classes were offered in the Antelope Valley. However, the demand for services eventually outgrew that facility, prompting CHIRLA to approach the City of Lancaster’s Tapestry Commission for assistance.
Ed Galindo of the Lancaster Tapestry Commission led the charge by contacting Cal State Long Beach to begin discussions regarding what would be needed to set up a Spanish G.E.D. program in Lancaster. CSULB was eager to provide the space needed for the classes, while CHIRLA offered to sponsor the instructors and course materials.
“As a provider of quality higher education here in the Antelope Valley, Cal State University Long Beach understands the importance of offering educational opportunities for all citizens,” said Kenneth Santarelli, CSULB Director of the Antelope Valley Engineering Program. “We are happy to assist in this effort because we know education changes lives.”
The initial six-month Spanish G.E.D. course at Lancaster University Center has already begun. With 50-seat classes being held twice a week (Monday and Wednesday), three times a day, 150 students are gaining the education they need to succeed in life.
With a pre-existing wait list already established, the demand is undeniable. Once the course is completed, students will take the General Educational Development Test in Long Beach, after which successful graduates will receive their California High School Equivalency Certificate. A local graduation ceremony is being planned.
“We as a council are pleased to see significant progress regarding expanding opportunities for Antelope Valley residents,” said Vice Mayor Marvin Crist.
Those interested in registering for the Spanish G.E.D courses may visit the Lancaster University Center at 45356 Division Street, or contact Omar Ruiz at firstname.lastname@example.org for enrollment information and class schedules.
(Information via press release from the city of Lancaster.)