Santa Monica, a Lifelong Learning Community

Lifelong Learning Community News - JANUARY 2010
This new year begins with some sad and very significant losses to our lifelong learning community.

Docia Zavitkovsky has passed away. Professor Zavitkovsky served as director of the school district’s early childhood program for 39 years and was also the first full-time faculty member in Child Development at Santa Monica College. In her twenty years of service to the College, she was instrumental in the development of what is considered to be one of the best Early Childhood Education programs in California. Since her retirement in 1978, she has remained a valued resource not only to Santa Monica College and to the Santa Monica Child Care and Early Education Task Force but to child development and child care programs throughout the state and the nation.

Docia was past president of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and served on the National Advisory Board for Early Childhood Today. She was a strong and influential leader in early childhood education and a beloved mentor and teacher for many people in our community. Our community’s strong commitment to high quality early childhood education is, in part, her legacy.
Karen Kaye, Executive Director of Connections for Children, our local resource and referral agency for home and center-based early childhood education and preschools, has also left us. Karen worked tirelessly on behalf of children and families. She understood how important quality early care and education is for families who work and need to know that their children are safe, nurtured, and thriving. Karen championed the cause of child care providers and early childhood educators. Over the past several years, she spear-headed the work of Los Angeles County child care resource and referral agencies to develop Gateways for Early Educators, a program offering endless pathways to sustained and continued early care and education workforce development.

As a leader, Karen's drive to achieve her goals of improved access to high quality child care and education was inspiring to the field. Her commitment to making Connections For children an outstanding organization was always foremost. And finally, her optimism never flagged.

Through her work at Connections, Karen has touched and improved countless lives and made a big difference in our community. She has been at the core of our efforts to make Santa Monica a model lifelong learning community. She will be deeply missed. There will be a celebration to honor Karen’s life on January 16th. Please email me if you’d like more information. Please send donations in honor of Karen to Connections For Children.
Lastly, and most recently, Mayor Ken Genser passed away peacefully in his sleep on Saturday, January 9. What can I say about Ken? The local press is writing about Ken’s decades of service to Santa Monica and about his strong role in supporting affordable housing, protecting rent control, and restraining overdevelopment. Ken also proved himself to be a strong supporter and key partner for our public schools. He played a key role in bringing about a new constructive partnership between our schools and our city; our lifelong learning community is stronger because of his leadership.

As a City Council member, Ken was accessible, intelligent, and articulate. He was responsive to public concerns and public opinion and he did his homework thoroughly. He was deliberative and thoughtful and honest and respectful. He was a person and a politician of great integrity. And he has been one of the most influential City Councilmembers in recent history. Ken’s life has been Santa Monica and Santa Monica reflects his values and his intellect. He leaves a lasting legacy and record of service and professionalism; he too will be deeply missed.

For more information about Mayor Genser, please go to www.surfsantamonica. com. Funeral and memorial service arrangements have not yet been announced.

It astonishes me that life goes on even when it seems it should, at the very least, take a pause... but it does. There are many special, wonderful, and important lifelong learning events this month. Please read on for some of the highlights:

Tuesday, January 12,
City Council discusses possibility of Broad Art Museum

City Hall
1685 Main Street

Really Big News! It looks like a new Broad museum of contemporary art will be coming to the Santa Monica Civic Center! The City Council will discuss principles for concluding the negotiation with the Broad Foundation to establish the museum here in Santa Monica. The staff report is online at

Wednesday, January 13, 7 p.m.
Author’s talk & book signing: Mindsight

Barnes & Noble
3rd Street Promenade
1201 3rd Street, Santa Monica
Rsvp to

Dr. Dan Siegel spoke at our very first Lifelong Learning Community Conference about brain development in children from birth to age three. His new book, “Mindsight:The New Science of Personal Transformation” sounds like it is applicable to all ages. Dr. Siegel is an excellent speaker with a fascinating expertise. If you can make this event, please do! For more information, please visit
Wednesday, January 13, 6:30 - 8:30 pm
Can I Retire? How Do I Know?

YWCA Santa Monica / Westside Community Room
2019 14th Street
Moderator, Hollis Harman
$45. To register, please call 310 452-3881.

The YWCA hosts this financial literacy seminar for women.
Thursday, January 14, 7:30 p.m.
Christopher Knight: “Criticism, Journalism & Looking @ Art”

The Broad Stage at Santa Monica College
Santa Monica Boulevard at 11th Street

The Santa Monica College Art Department, in conjunction with Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, is pleased to present "Criticism, Journalism and Looking @ Art," a public lecture by Los Angeles Times art critic Christopher Knight. Knight is the 2009-10 visiting critic in Fine Arts at Otis. His lecture will roam far and wide over art, journalism, history and critical art writing by journalists and others and will include examples found in traditional print media and online media. Distinctions will be made among journalistic, trade, academic and theoretical criticism.
Friday, January 15, 7:30 – 9am
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Interfaith Prayer Breakfast

Calvary Baptist Church
1502 20th Street
Suggested donation is $25 per person or $200 for a table for ten.
Free parking across the street at St. Anne's

This year’s Interfaith Prayer Breakfast in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. will feature speaker Reverend Louis Chase, Minister of the Hamilton United Methodist Church of Los Angeles and Acting Chair of the Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace. Rev. Chase works on issues of race, environment, immigration, promoting peace, and nuclear disarmament. This is the first of three events to celebrate the birthday of the slain civil rights leader. The celebrations are presented in cooperation with the Westside Interfaith Coalition and the Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra. To make reservations or for more information, please contact or call 310-452-1116.

Friday, January 15, 3:30 p.m.
Julianne Bruce in Concert

Santa Monica Main Library, Martin Luther King, Jr. Auditorium
601 Santa Monica Boulevard

This delightful concert of flute and piano pieces by a variety of composers including Ibert, Poulenc and Mozart is an event of The Living Room …a place for adults. Julianne Bruce began studying flute at age nine. She was principal flute of the Santa Monica High School Wind Ensemble and Symphony Orchestra, as well as flute section leader in the Marching Band. She was also principal flute of the All Southern California Honor Orchestra and the California Orchestra Director's Association Orchestra. Julianne is now studying with Michel Debost at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and will graduate this spring.
Sunday, January 17, 3:30 p.m.
4th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Concert

SGI-USA Auditorium
525 Wilshire Boulevard

The 4th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Concert features the Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Allen Robert Gross with tuba soloist Christopher Miller performing Night on Bald Mountain by Mussorgsky, suite from "the Firebird" by Stravinsky, Tuba Concerto by Vaughan Williams, and Danzon No. 2 by Marquez. This is the second of three events to celebrate the birthday of the slain civil rights leader. The celebrations are presented in cooperation with the Westside Interfaith Coalition and the Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra. For more information, please call 310/395-6330 or go to
Monday, January 18, 9am
25th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Adena Williams Loston
SGI-USA Auditorium
525 Wilshire Boulevard

This multiethnic interfaith program includes inspirational readings, music, and presentations of scholarships, along with a keynote address by Dr. Adena Williams Loston who serves as the 14th President of St. Philip’s College, our nation’s only Historically Black College and Hispanic Serving Instituion. The celebration is followed by a Community Involvement Fair, from 11 a.m. to noon at 606 Wilshire Blvd. Free parking is available on 7th Street, behind the 7-11 store on Wilshire Boulevard.

This annual celebration on the official King holiday has become one of the largest and most diverse celebrations of its kind in Southern California. It is co-sponsored by Santa Monica College, Santa Monica College Associates, the City of Santa Monica, City TV-Santa Monica, RAND Corp., and SGI-USA.

For more information, please call (310) 434-4303 or (310) 453-5511.
Tuesday, January 19, 7:00 pm
Santa Monica High School Jazz Band

Santa Monica High School, Barnum Hall
601 Pico Boulevard
$10 at the door; $5 for students/seniors

Featuring special guest artist Bob Mintzer, world-renowned tenor saxophonist and jazz arranger. Bob Mintzer is the Director of Jazz Studies at USC.
Wednesday, January 20, noon – 1:00pm
Navigating the Senior Care Maze

Speaker: Bonnie Davis, Elderly Advisor – A Place for Mom
Santa Monica YMCA, DeWind Room
1332 6th Street

Learn the different elder care options that are available and how to determine the one that fits the specific needs of a family. In addition, Bonnie will clarify available funding sources. For more information contact Lidia Magarian, Senior Physical Director at the YMCA (310) 393-2721ext. 129 or email Free underground parking is available. Picture ID is required.
School Budget Presentation
Wednesday, January 20, 7:00-9:00pm

Santa Monica High School Cafeteria
601 Pico Boulevard

California’s continuing budget crisis means cuts in public education. Our school district cut 4.5 this year and will probably need to cut another $8 million for the 2010-11 school year.

Superintendent Tim Cuneo writes:

“During the next six months, the Board of Education will be studying potential revenue enhancements and budget reductions. Examples of these include:
  • a new parcel tax to offset a portion of this shortfall
  • a reduction in the school year by five days
  • increases in class size at all grade levels
  • additional positions being cut at the district office and school sites
  • additional energy and utilities conservation
  • fewer summer school class offerings
  • reductions of support staff such as librarians, nurses, counselors, and classroom aides “

Superintendent Cuneo invites school and community members to attend meetings to learn more about the impact of the states funding short fall on the district’s budget. This January 20 meeting is the first of four budget presentations (January 20, 21, 26, & 27) that the superintendent will be making this month at school sites. Everyone is invited to attend. For more information, please visit the district website at Budget materials can be found at

Thursday, January 21, 7:30 a.m.-10 a.m.
State of the City Breakfast

The Broad Stage at Santa Monica College
Santa Monica Boulevard at 11th Street
Tickets range from $35 to $60. For tickets, call (310) 393-9825 ext. 10 or go to

Santa Monica College is pleased to host the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce's State of the City 2010 breakfast honoring Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt and featuring keynote speaker Bill Allen, president and chief executive officer of the Los Angeles Economic Development Corp.

In addition, the event will serve as a platform to say goodbye to outgoing Santa Monica City Manager P. Lamont Ewell and to welcome his successor, Rod Gould. January 21 is Ewell's last day as city manager.
Thursday, January 21, 7:00-9:00pm
School Budget Presentation

Malibu High School Auditorium
30215 Morning View Drive, Malibu

For more information, please see the description for the January 20 Budget Presentation at Samohi.
Saturday, January 23, 2-3:30pm
The New Retirement: Women in Transition

Santa Monica Public Library, Martin Luther King, Jr. Auditorium
601 Santa Monica Boulevard

For the first time in history, millions of working and career women are facing retirement with few, if any, role models. This life stage is creating new expectations, challenges and possibilities. Learn how women are facing the “new retirement,” their key issues and the emerging resources relevant to their professional and personal lives. This event is part of The Living Room Series and is sponsored by The Older Adult Task Force (OATF). The OATF, part of the Lifelong Learning Community Project, is a consortium of over 35 organizations. OATF promotes lifelong learning for adults through its various projects and collaboration amongst its member organizations.
Tuesday, January 26, 7:00-9:00pm
School Budget Presentation

John Adams Middle School Cafeteria
2426 16th Street

For more information, please see the description for the January 20 Budget Presentation at Samohi.
Wednesday, January 27, 7:00-9:00pm
School Budget Presentation

Lincoln Middle School Cafeteria
1501 California Avenue

For more information, please see the description for the January 20 Budget Presentation at Samohi.
Saturday, January 30, 2:00 p.m.
Forum of Local Artists: “Art with Cultural Folk Stories”

Santa Monica Public Library, Martin Luther King Jr. Auditorium
601 Santa Monica Boulevard
The Senior Arts Foundation and the City of Santa Monica present “Art with Cultural Folk Stories.” This forum will present local artists who infuse their work with cultural folk stories. Through their art, they inspire us to learn more about the different histories, traditions, humor and lifestyles of their unique cultures.

Ronn Davis, Santa Monica College Art Department Chair, will moderate a panel discussion, featuring American artist Ramona Otto, Persian artist Badri Borghei, and Korean artist Younghee Park. Ramona Otto has been a teacher of academically gifted children for 35 years, and her classes have always been a receptive audience to her work. Born in Tehran, Iran, Badri Borghei expresses her work through the ancient form of Persian Miniature Art. With her art, she tries to inspire younger generations who know little about Persian tradition and culture. Born in Korea and educated in Japan at the Ikenobo School, Younghee Park uses cloth flower arrangement as an expression of her interpretation and perception of nature. Her cloth flowers are also symbolic representations of family stories and experiences.

The Senior Arts and Community Forum series is sponsored by the city’s Cultural Affairs and Human Services Divisions, the Santa Monica Public Library, and the Senior Arts Foundation, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to making the arts more accessible to seniors. For more information about the Senior Arts Foundation visit This Forum is also endorsed by Santa Monica College’s Emeritus College.

This Program is free and open to the public. For more information, call the Senior Arts Foundation at (310) 393-0701, ext. 21, or the Main Library at (310) 458-8600.
Sundays, Thursdays, Saturdays, January 31 – April 25
The Wonder of Learning - The Hundred Languages of Children Exhibit
Thursdays 4-8pm ; Saturdays 10-4pm ; Sundays 12-4pm

1129 Second Street
It is fitting and hopeful and a testament to Santa Monica’s status as a lifelong learning community that we end this month with the opening of this very special exhibition that celebrates and supports learning in young children.

“The Wonder of Learning - The Hundred Languages of Children” is the newest North American version of “The Hundred Languages of Children” exhibit that has been touring the United States, Canada and Mexico since 1987.

From birth, children use many “languages,” such as art, music, play, drama and literacy, to learn about and make meaning of the world. To help educators, parents and other advocates for children to better understand the powerful learning that occurs in early childhood, the world-renowned Reggio Emilia approach to education gives visibility to the values of its experience through this interactive traveling exhibit.

A series of professional development initiatives has been organized in connection with The Wonder of Learning - The Hundred Languages of Children. exhibit in Santa Monica, including:

"Dialogues for Quality in Education: The School as a Place of Community, Collaboration, Research and Innovation" will be presented January 28-30, hosted by First Presbyterian Nursery School. For more information about the exhibition and the presentations, please go to or email
That’s all for now.

Here’s wishing all of us a happy and healthy new year.

Cheers and Onward,

Louise Jaffe

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