Campus: CSU, Northridge -- July 23, 2001

CSUN Offers Special Summer Classes for Youngsters

For many youngsters, summer vacation means hanging out at the local swimming pool and ignoring schoolwork. But for about 1,350 elementary and secondary school students, vacation this year means taking special classes at Cal State Northridge.

More than 800 sixth through twelfth graders are getting a head start toward their high school degrees this month in CSUN's Summer Academic Enrichment Program (SAEP), which is now in its 23rd year. Sponsored by the Department of Secondary Education, the five-week program on the university campus costs $375 to $425.

Many of the students are enrolled in two, two-hour classes each weekday, earning elective credit in a wide variety of subjects. The 35 classes offered include topics in mathematics, reading, computers, dance, drivers education, journalism, martial arts, Spanish, psychology and SAT preparation courses.

"One of the goals of these programs is that the students begin to plan early to set high educational goals and attend college," said Bonnie Ericson, director of the program and chair of CSUN's Secondary Education Department.

Meanwhile, about 450 first through sixth graders are working on their skills in math, writing and reading, and taking classes such as art, dance and science in a similar program sponsored by CSUN's Elementary Education Department. CSUN has offered the Summer Academic Program for Elementary School Students (SAPESS) for the past 19 years.

"Our summer program was created to fill a void, since the university did not provide a summer program for elementary students" in the early years while hosting the secondary program, said Philip Kligman, associate professor in the Elementary Education Department and director of the elementary program.

The program allows "students to develop their own program of work," said Arlinda Eaton, associate dean of CSUN's College of Education, which oversees both programs.

For a $400 fee, elementary students are allowed to select four classes. "Some students elect to take classes that complement those that are offered at their regular schools. Others elect to take classes that will reinforce and expand upon classes offered at their regular schools," Eaton said.

"Through a creative and secure environment, the program introduces students into the university community," Kligman added.

Most instructors in both programs are public and private school teachers who have been credentialed after attending CSUN, are enrolled in CSUN master's programs, or have already received master's degrees from the university.

The Monday through Friday programs began July 2 and will continue through August 3.
Enrollment for this year's programs is closed. But to be placed on the mailing list for next year or for additional program information, contact Glenn Bailey at (818) 677-3333.

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