CCI’s Tutoring Program to Shut Down This Semester
On Wednesday February 13th, the Center for Community Involvement announced that it will be closing its individual tutoring program at the end of the Spring 2019 semester. This program, which has been available at Pacific for over three decades, had been devoted to providing academic assistance to low-income families in the Stockton community and was one of the largest employers for Pacific students. Terminating the program will be one of the greatest reductions the establishment has experienced in its 140-year history.
“We recognize the deep impact that this decision has on our community,” stated Marylou Bagus-Hansen, the Director of the Center for Community Involvement. “We are committed to helping our Individual Tutoring families find alternative educational enrichment programs in Stockton and San Joaquin County. The CCI will maintain our partnership with Stockton Unified School District and continue supporting these existing programs with Pacific student tutors.”
The reason for this dramatic change has been stated to be California’s 2016 legislation requiring minimum wage to be raised to $15 by the year 2022. “The CCI has historically attracted and retained strong tutors through ongoing training and competitive wages above the minimum. As a result, the overall costs to maintain this program are no longer sustainable.” This decision will prevent the price of tutoring services, which has already more than doubled from $10 to $22 in the space of ten years, from continuing to rise further out of necessity, thereby alienating the families who need the CCI’s tutoring services the most.
Following the discontinuation of the program next year, the CCI will be assisting families by providing them with an “Area Tutoring Directory,” which will allow them to locate various tutoring services throughout Stockton. For students that have been employed as individual tutors, the CCI has also offered help with finding similar, alternative employment.
Even so, the closing of the program has left an impact on tutors and students’ families. “It’s disappointing to see one of Pacific’s biggest ways of interacting with the community be shut down,” says Jessica Nguyen ‘19, who has been working at the CCI since her freshman year.
However, the termination of the individual tutoring program does not mean that the Center for Community Involvement will be shutting down entirely. The Reach Out program and other opportunities for community service will remain available in the years that follow, and representatives are eager to point out that the spirit of the establishment founded in 1879 will persist through all changes, no matter how major. “We look forward to the continued evolution of this legacy,” stated Bagus-Hansen. It is left for the Pacific community to await the revelation of what form this evolution will take.
Jo Ann Kirby
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