As a member of the adult education community for 40-plus years, I am alarmed and dismayed at the ease with which Santa Barbara City College administration dismisses us and our needs. While I understand the college is in disrepair and requires funding, I do not at all buy that they need to take over our two campuses, the Wake Center and the Schott Center, to serve their students.
Sam Wake and Alice Schott clearly indicated in the legal papers that accompanied their gifts of these two venues that they provide for the Adult Education program in perpetuity. The same thing keeps happening with the Wilcox property, now known as the Douglas preserve. How can someone donate anything and ensure that their gift will be retained for the purpose intended?
We are tax-paying residents of Santa Barbara, many of us senior citizens, some of us disabled, who count on our Adult Education program to enrich our lives. That we matter so little to the agency we have supported for decades is appalling.
Shelley Cole is cofounder and former director of CASA, Court-Appointed Special Advocates; boardmember of ACES, Associated Continuing Education Students; and a current and perennial Adult Ed student and advocate for lifelong learning.