Friday, August 18, 2017

Special Registration and Welcome to Former Foster City ESL Students

Changes for the SMAS Foster City Location

San Mateo Adult School is no longer able to offer ESL classes in Foster City.

SMAS staff is sorry we can no longer offer the classes at the Foster City location.  We hope the students who attended Foster City location classes will discover the joys of coming to our Poplar Street Main Campus.

The Poplar Street Main Campus has many fun customs and helpful events.  We celebrate many holidays, have informational fairs and speakers, and just like Foster City, we celebrate International Day - and International Night! 

Staff and students welcome you!

Registering for ESL Classes at the Poplar Street Main Campus

Former Foster City ESL students should come to our Poplar Street Main Campus on

Tuesday, August 22nd or Wednesday, September 5th from 8:30 am to 11:00 am.
--- This is a special time for former Foster City location ESL students!

At that time, you will be placed into an ESL class at our Poplar Street Campus.  ESL Learning Specialist Marina will help you find the right class for you and help you accustom to the new campus.

Getting to Poplar Street Main Campus

* The address is 789 East Poplar Ave.

* The cross streets are Humboldt and Delaware. 

* The campus is just a few blocks from the Poplar Street and Peninsula Street exits of the 101 freeway.

* The campus is next to San Mateo High School and across the street from College Park Elementary.

* With three schools in the area, mornings can be busy with lots of traffic.  Please drive carefully.  Watch for pedestrians - especially young children.  Allow time to find parking.

* The campus has several parking lots.  They fill up quickly in the morning.  If the parking lots are full, look for parking on the street.

* For information about taking the bus, check out

* You can call 1 - 800 - 660 - 4287 and they will give you complete instructions for taking the bus.

*  El Camino is about ten blocks to the west of the main campus.  It is a flat, safe area to walk. 

*  The "ECR" - El Camino Real - Samtrans bus has many stops on El Camino.  You can walk from the bus stop to the school.  Many students do this.

* Consider carpooling or taking the bus with a friend or former classmate.

Red for Adult Ed on Tuesdays

On the Poplar Street Main Campus, we wear Red for Adult Ed on Tuesdays to take pride in our school and carry the message that Adult Education Matters. Please join us in this custom.

We can't wait to meet you!


Call 650 - 558 - 2100

Friday, July 21, 2017

Ayako's Story: Success & Gratitude

Ayako Ueda during Adult Ed Week 2016
Ayako Ueda was an ESL student at our school.  Recently, she returned to her home country, Japan.  Because of what she learned at our school, she is experiencing new success.  Here, with her permission, is her story.

I am happy to share my good news that I got a full-time job at a tour company in Japan which I really wanted to work for. I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to my teachers and friends in San Mateo Adult School. Without your encouragement, I wouldn’t have come this far.

The biggest gift I have received from the school is the courage to try new things. I used to give up before trying by finding many excuses, such as “I am not qualified because I am not good enough”, or “I am too old for that”.

However, from my experience, I find this phrase true: “You never know what you can do until you try.” It is very scary to try something new, but it worth it.

In addition, SMAS helped me in practical ways too.

- “Setting ones goal” activity in the morning class clarified my future goal.

- Because of their encouragement, I took college classes and found out about the opportunity in this company.

 -Speaking practice in the afternoon conversation class enabled me to perform well in the interview. (Even in my language!)

This is the first step to reach my ultimate goal. I am excited to see what will come next. Finally, I would like to say to my fellow students. “Don’t limit yourself. You can do more than you think you can.” Thank you.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Meet Dr. K, Ka'Ryn Holder-Jackson, New Direction of ACCEL, our Regional Consortium

New ACCEL Director

This month we welcome "Dr. K," Ka'Ryn Holder-Jackson, as the new Executive Director of ACCEL, our Regional Consortium.   Her first name is pronounced "Kuh-rin."  You can call her, "Dr. K."
Her office is next to the Learning Center, in the right hand back corner of the SMART Center.  If you see Dr. K on campus, you can introduce yourself and welcome her to our school community.

 Dr. K is Passionate about Education

Dr. K is excited about serving Adult Learners.  She says, "I'm passionate about education, particularly since I did a lot of my education as an adult."  She received her MBA and her PhD as an adult learner.  She understands the reality of balancing home, work, and family.    "I admire adult learners since it takes a lot of courage and discipline," she says.
"They are the true champions."

More About Dr. K

In her free time, Dr. K enjoys reading mysteries and biographies.   She likes spending time with her family and she loves teaching a weekly Sunday School class to teens. 

ACCEL's Tagline and Dr. K's Message for Students

The new tagline for ACCEL is "Imagine, explore, and accelerate."  Dr. K loves it.  She looks forward to helping students imagine their career path, explore the possibilities, and then accelerate toward their goals.  

Dr. K has a message for students:  "Are you ready to take flight and soar toward your dreams?   Yes? ...Then let's begin!  Already in motion?  Fabulous!!! Keep moving until you reach your goal!  I look forward to seeing you at the top!"

Adult Ed Regional Consortium System

Adult Education in California is divided into regions.  Each region has a consortium - a group of Adult Schools and Community Colleges - working together to provide Adult Education to that area.  In this way, everyone can think about the special needs and strengths of each area.   You can learn more about the Regional Consortium system and the Adult Ed Block Grant here.

ACCEL Schools
Jefferson Adult School in Daly City near Serramonte Shopping Center

San Mateo County
La Costa Adult School  on the Western Coast of San Mateo in Half Moon Bay
Sequoia Adult School - in Redwood City near El Camino Real
South San Francisco Adult School - in South San Francisco
CaƱada College - in the countryside of San Mateo County, near Redwood City, off 280 
College of San Mateo - in the hills of San Mateo, near 280 and 92
Skyline College - in the hills of San Bruno



Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Registration for ESL Classes Fall Semester 2017

For NEW ESL students, here are the dates to register for Fall 2017 ESL Classes

Registration for 2017 Fall Semester
ESL Classes
For both Morning and Evening, Registration is a 2 day process –
You must attend BOTH listed dates.
Registration Dates for Morning & Afternoon ESL Classes
Morning registration begins at 8:30 am
Be on time.   It is “First Come, First Served” policy.

Thursday, August 17 & Friday, August 188:30 am
Wed, August 23 & Thursday, August 248:30 am
Monday, August 28 and Tuesday, August 298:30 am
Thursday, August 31 & Friday, September 18:30 am
Wed, September 6 & Thursday, September 78:30 am
Monday, September 11 & Tues, September 128:30 am
Mon, September 18 & Tues, September 198:30 am
Mon, September 25 & Tues, September 268:30 am
Monday, October 2 & Tuesday, October 38:30 am
Monday, October 9 & Tuesday, October 108:30 am
Registration Dates for Evening ESL Classes
You must attend both days.  Be on time.  Don’t be late.
Wednesday, August 16 & Thurs, August 175:45 PM
Tuesday, August 22 & Wed, August  235:45 PM
Monday, August 28 & Tuesday, August 295:45PM
Tuesday, September 5 & Wed, September 65:45 PM
Monday, September 11 & Tues, September 125:45 PM
Monday, September 25 & Tues, Sept 265:45 PM
Monday, October 2 & Tuesday, October 35:45 PM
Monday, October 9 & Tuesday, October 105:45 PM

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Success Story: Mohulamu Tau

Mohulamu Tau accepting his diploma

Mohulamu Tau recently graduated with a High School Diploma from San Mateo Adult School.  He was one of the speakers at the graduation.  Here, with his permission, is his speech. 


            Good evening family and friends of the San Mateo Adult School Class of 2017. I would like to thank you all for joining us tonight as we celebrate our accomplishments and the beginning of the next chapter of our lives. There has been many times where I’ve been asked “what does Adult School mean to me?” Adult School may not be important to others, but it is a program that has changed my life. This program has been so much more than school to me. “Another Chance” I would think to myself. Ever since I have met Mr. T, Ms. Carlota, and Mrs. Thompson, I came to realize that Adult School is more than just another chance; it was my opportunity to prove all those who doubted me wrong, and to show that nothing could stop me. Thank you to you all at the Adult School who has opened my eyes to see the bigger picture. It was the push that we needed to remind us that we have a purpose in this world, and that we must work hard to find it. Each of us here in this program has faced trials that have steered us away from our educational paths, but we are here today to show that we are able to continue. We all come from different struggles and lifestyles, but we are here before you to show that it is never too late to continue your education.

            Before this program I attended Aragon and Peninsula High School. The challenges I faced had limited my time at these schools, but without these challenges I would not have been able to be standing here before you tonight. Since I was a kid, I knew I would be attending Aragon once I reached High School. My two older brothers and many other relatives had graduated from there, so it was only right that I had followed suit. It was something that I’ve imagined my whole life, playing football for Coach Sell and becoming an Aragon graduate. Making the Varsity football team was the highlight of my freshmen year but unfortunately, during my sophomore year; school was not a priority to me. I slacked off so much that eventually Peninsula High School was my next destination. Getting sent to Peninsula my junior year really helped me get back on track. My main goal was to get back on that football field. That is all I wanted to do, play football. The staff at Peninsula encouraged me to do my work and achieve my goals, to attend Aragon once again and finish my senior year off strong graduating an Aragon Don.

Sad to say, my senior year did not go as planned. In the beginning of the school year my family received devastating news that one of my brothers were missing. A day later, a day before his 25th birthday, we were given the news that my brother Tani has passed away. It was a pain that I was incapable of dealing with. It numbed my body to the bone. People will say to “use the incident as motivation” but it was harder said than done. For a short period of time, I had lost all motivation for school. The loss had taken its toll on me and my mind was not in the right place. Once I was back into school for a couple days, I was given the choice to stay at Aragon or go back to Peninsula to finish off the school year. Since I was unable to play again I made my decision to go back to Peninsula High School where I had continued to slack off and eventually dropped out of school. I didn’t think I was ever going to have the drive to want to go back to school. However, because of Mr. T, I began to have hope once again.

Mr. T and the SMAS Team
            At first, I was skeptical about Adult school. As you would expect, Mr. T is a very convincing man. Once he got my number he became a best friend, a mentor and a motivator. He would always call just to check up on me and continues to until this day. The love and support I received made me want to accomplish so much more. I love you Mr. T and don’t you ever forget that!

Coming to Adult school was one of the best decisions I have made. I want to take this time to show my love and appreciation to a very special woman in my life. She is the one that pushed me the hardest to get my work done, the one that did not ever give up on me even when I gave up on myself. Arianna, I would not be up here if it weren’t for you. From keeping me from going out with all the boys to dragging me to the library for a couple hours even if you didn’t have homework to do. You are always thinking about not only what is best for you but, what’s best for the both of us. Standing up here tonight is one example of “our” hard work. I love you and thank you for everything you do for us. To ALL my family and friends, especially Toa, Vaasi, Gabe, Carolyn, Andria, and Papa thank you for being there for me through all the ups and downs and never turning your back on me. To ALL my other brothers, nothing changed. Staying solid, the way we were raised. To my brother and everyone watching from above, I love you guys and keep guiding me in the right direction. Last but not least to the woman who brought me into this world, I love you so much mom. You do more than enough not only for my siblings and I, but for every persons lives you come apart of. In the words of Tupac “there’s no way that I can pay you back, but my plan is to show you that I understand: you are appreciated.” Thank you.

Congratulations, Mohulamu, for overcoming obstacles and reaching success.  You inspire us!

The Class of 2017

Mohulamu Tau