Hundreds of people gathered outside Tuesday's meeting of the Los Angeles Unified School District board to show their support for adult education.
"It's very important for me because I want to get my GED and my diploma and help my children for their education," said Betty Field, reflecting what many protesters believe.
If the programs go away, protesters say more than a quarter million people will be shut out of classes they need to make a contribution to society.
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"We provide basic education to 255,000 people in LA," said teacher William Howard. "They are people who are hard working, who desperately want the skills and better education to support their kids and to get better jobs."
The school board has approved a worst case scenario fiscal plan that would deeply cut into adult education. Board members hope they don't have to implement the cuts, but chances for assistance from state and federal sources seem bleak.
"We feel like, why don't we work with what we already have rather than building a new school every month," said instructor Daniel Kaufman. "Why don't we develop what we've already got which is thriving beautifully and it's serving the community in a wonderful way.'
Some protesters tried to counter the argument that the cuts will save money. They say people without education make less money and pay lower taxes than those who get an education. Some may even up requiring public assistance.