Fresno State César Chávez Education Conference is April 30, May 1

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Fresno State César Chávez Education Conference is April 30, May 1

Three literacy and education experts headline the seventh annual César Chávez Education Conference at California State University, Fresno, focusing on “Literacy and the Professional Teacher.”

Also coming to campus is Merlyn Calderon, national vice president and California political director for the United Farm Workers of America. She will be at Fresno State with the Fair Harvest Meals program that will examine deaths of farmworkers in recent years from heat exhaustion.

At the Kremen conference, students, educators, policymakers, community leaders and researchers will engage in discussions and workshops on literacy, reform and teaching English as a second language.

The conference is scheduled 4-7 p.m. Friday, April 30, and 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, May 1, at the Satellite Student Union. It is free and open to the public with free parking available in Lots K, L and M. On-site registration is available.

The principal speakers are:

  • Dr. Wayne Au, professor of secondary education at California State University, Fullerton and author of “By Design: High-Stakes Testing & the Standardization of Inequality,” who will speak at 4 p.m. April 30.
  • Dr. Stephen Krashen, an education emeritus professor at the University of Southern California and proponent of reading, who will speak at 5:45 p.m. April 30 and again at 10:45 a.m. May 1. He has written “The Power of Literacy” and nine other books.
  • Dr. Richard Levien, writer, editor and producer of “Immersion,” a 2009 short film centered on children learning English as a second language. He will show his film and hold a discussion at 9 a.m. May 1.

Several breakout sessions will feature issues of educational reform and literacy instruction. Six authors will address the negative effects of testing in the public schools..

The Kremen School of Education and Human Development presents the event as part of Fresno State’s observance of the César Chávez Day of Service Learning holiday observed statewide March 31, the birthday of the late United Farm Workers union founder. The campus celebration was March 24.

The Fair Harvest Meal is planned noon-2 p.m. in the Kremen Education Building Room 140. At the meal, Calderon will discuss first-hand experiences of farmworkers and dangerous – sometimes deadly – conditions they face in the fields.

The UFW is taking the presentation to universities around the nation after the first stop at Fresno State. Also hosting meals this spring are California State University, Monterey Bay, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and University of California at Santa Cruz.

The local stop is sponsored by the College Assistance Migrant Program at Fresno State.

For information about the conference, contact Dr. Glenn DeVoogd at 559.278.0279 or For the UFW presentation, contact Ambar Alvarez Soto at 559. 278.6097.

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