April 13 Meeting Focus on Public Education

Join us on April 13 to discuss Public Education and the Department of Education’s proposed policies. Find out about the threat posed to public education such as the “portability” policy, and how this budget has been crafted to direct money away from public schools and into private hands under the guise of school choice. We will examine how the federal government will attempt to leverage California into accepting a voucher system by placing restrictions on Title I funding as well as the planned cuts of funding for teacher training and low income student programs while offering huge tax credits for donations to private school scholarships. We will also discuss how these policies will impact not only local public schools but the local economy.

Diablo Valley Democratic Club to Discuss What's Next with Education in California at November 29 Meeting

The Diablo Valley Democratic Club's November 29 meeting will feature a conversation about Education in California: What's Next with Craig Cheslog, Principal Advisor to State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson.

Cheslog will report on the meaning of Proposition 30 and the expected Democratic legislative supermajority on California's public elementary and high schools and colleges. He is Superintendent Torlakson's personal strategist, advisor, spokesperson, liaison to outside individuals and organizations, and coordinator of his major education initiatives.

The DVDC meets from 7-9 p.m. at the Ygnacio Valley Library, 2661 Oak Grove Road, Walnut Creek. Please park on Deerpark Drive, the first right after the library, unless you have difficulty walking. For more information, call 925-946-0469 or visit the club's web site.

You Are Invited to an Orinda Event to Celebrate Asm. Joan Buchanan Becoming Education Committee Chair

Join us in congratulating Assemblymember Joan Buchanan on her appointment as Chair of the Assembly Education Committee! An event in her honor will be held on Thursday, October 18, from 5-7 p.m., at the The Fairway Lounge in the Orinda Country Club, 315 Camino Sobrante, Orinda, CA 94563-1899.

Tickets are $100 each with sponsorships available. Click here to purchase your event ticket. You may also download an event flyer.

Unite for Education Rally for Proposition 30 in Concord on October 10

Join Assemblymember Susan Bonilla, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, Former State Superintendent of Public Instruction Delaine Eastin, and the Mt. Diablo Education Association for a Unite for Education: Yes on Prop 30 Rally on Wednesday, October 10, from 5-6:30 p.m. at Todos Santos Park in Concord.

This November we face a choice about the future of California. Please join teachers, parents, students, and community leaders as we stand together here in Contra Costa County.

Bring your family, friends,colleagues, and let's unite for education!

San Ramon Valley Democratic Club's August 23 Meeting Features Discussion of "A Blueprint for Great Schools" with Craig Cheslog

The San Ramon Valley Democratic Club's Thursday, June 28, meeting features presentations by Craig Cheslog, Principal Advisor to State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, and a local speaker John Roe, who will discuss Proposition 32.

Recognizing that California must plan for the future, State Superintendent Tom Torlakson brought together 59 leaders from across California—teachers, parents, community, labor and business leaders—to share their thinking about education in the state.The resulting report, A Blueprint for Great Schools, provides vision and direction for our education system, including a focus on 21st Century learning, meeting the needs of the whole child, and rebuilding the ranks of California’s teachers with resources and respect.

Craig Cheslog currently serves as the Principal Advisor to California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson at the California Department of Education.

Craig’s responsibilities in this role include serving as personal strategist, advisor to, and spokesperson for Superintendent Torlakson; serving as the Superintendent’s liaison to other major external individuals and organizations; coordinating major education initiatives; and managing the Superintendent’s Initiatives Office.

In addition to conducting outreach for ongoing and prospective educational initiatives sponsored by Superintendent Torlakson, the Superintendent’s Initiatives Office is responsible for the coordination and management of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction’s day-to-day operations; management of all correspondence received by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction; and administration of various awards programs designed to honor students, schools, teachers, and school employees.

Prior to joining the California Department of Education in January 2011, Craig served as the District Director for Assembly Member Tom Torlakson, after previously serving in the same capacity for then-State Senator Torlakson. Among his responsibilities then were managing the day-to-day operations of the Torlakson’s district offices, serving as the primary liaison with local elected officials, directing constituent outreach and assistance activities, and representing Torlakson at meetings and events.

Prior to joining Torlakson’s staff, Craig served as a communications and government relations staff person for nonprofit issue advocacy organizations, including Oakland’s Redefining Progress and the Washington, D.C.-based Concord Coalition. He is also a former national president and current member of the Board of Governors of the Alpha Delta Phi Society, a coeducational literary and social society with chapters at colleges and in cities around the United States.

Craig graduated from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, with a bachelor’s degree in government and legal studies with a minor in education.

The meeting will take place at the Crow Canyon Country Club, 711 Silver Lake Drive, in Danville. Social time at 6:15 p.m., dinner at 6:45 p.m., with the program at 7:15 p.m. Members and invited guests can enjoy the dinner and program for $25, non-members $30, presentation only is $5 (requested donation).Please RSVP to Jim Donnelly. Mail checks, made out to Jim Donnelly, to 373 Century Circle, Danville, CA 94526. For more information, visit the club's web site.