Tonight's City Council meeting has two items in store for education, and a proposal for parks to go corporate.
The After School Education and Safety Program is back to be approved for the upcoming school term, after being funded since 2002. ASES aims to assist K-9 students in areas such as after school literacy, academic enrichment, tutoring, recreation and the arts, and operates at the following schools: Burbank, Edison, Garfield, Grant, King, Lafayette, Lee Elementary and Hudson K-8 school sites. The program operates through Parks, Recreation and Marine, and is funded by more than $1 million in grants to the Long Beach Unified School District.
The Department of Parks, Recreation and Marine say that this program "will result in a positive impact on jobs" since there are 74 part-time employees currently working to facilitate the after-school program.
In order to do more with less, there is a proposal to create a Joint Use Committee composed of three Council members and two LBUSD board members, who would work together on similar goals. A committee like this used to be in order but was disbanded years ago, and is being proposed now to address issues that concern both the governing bodies and the school district, such as joint use of land, environmental concerns, and public safety concerns. The fiscal impacts are unknown as of yet, and the item is being proposed by Robert Garcia (First District), James Johnson (Seventh District) and Patrick O'Donnell (Fifth District).
As a response to another governmental arena that is being asked to do more with less, Patrick O'Donnell is proposing an item that would allow corporate sponsorship for the improvement of parks and recreation. In short, improving, expanding and renovating parks, buildings and new projects would be possible through corporate funding, in exchange for "name placement," or advertising brands in these public places.