Sunday, January 13, 2013


Last Friday, I attended a meeting at Cascadia Community College in Bothell, WA to discuss changes to the new Adult High School Diploma. I was one of two representatives from the Institute for Extended Learning to meet with members of the state board and a variety of Washington educators. 

The changes are significant. Under the previous plan, people over the age of 21 had to get a GED or earn high school credits through an ABE program (adult basic education). Just like high school, they had to earn credits the old fashioned way, through completing course work and attending class a certain number of hours. Under the new plan, students can earn credit for previous experience or by demonstrating competence in a variety of subject areas. They will no long be tied to credit hours as they were in the past. These are exciting changes that will allow educational access for wider range of people. 

These changes will likely begin in Fall of 2013. The state board has said that these changes are not secret. They will happen, and as such, we are encouraged to promote the new Adult High School Diploma as much as possible. 

While visiting Cascadia Community College, I appreciated the opportunity to see the campus, and especially to observe evidence of culture through art. Currently, the college is constructing a new building on campus., and instead of simply fencing off the construction site, they installed a series of art pieces painted on plywood. I'm always interested in what art says about our national and cultural conversations. 

I was also intrigued by the sign advertising a "Speed Friending" event on campus. I'm wondering if this is a way to encourage people to form friendships outside of their normal circles. 

A sign reads, "Many Roots ONE Community: Cascadia believes in pluralism, an intentional culture where everyone's history contributes to the collective success of our community." 

A spider web covered in frost. This was found along the main walkway across campus. 

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