Sunday, August 21, 2016

Fall 2016 Term Starts with WOW

Palomar's first-ever Week of Welcome (WOW) is happening on the main campus this week, Monday through Thursday. Students are encouraged to visit the “Passport” Station in the Student Union Quad to pick up a passport. Anyone that attends a workshop or one of the booths at the Resource/Student Club Fair will be able to get their passport stamped (collect stickers) and redeem them for refreshments/food every day of the event. Students can also use their passport to redeem backpacks and other supplies (scantrons, stapler kits, pens, green books, etc.). For a detailed event schedule, visit

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Find a Required Textbook

It is not too hard to find the information about a required textbook. Students can access their A-Z
booklist list on their smartphone or tablet by visiting and entering their Palomar student ID number.

Anyone can also access more detailed textbook info by following these simple steps:
  • Visit
  • Click on "Books"
  • "Select YourTem" (e.g. Fall 2016)
  • Enter a five-digit course ID in the search box on the right side of the screen and click on "Search"
Palomar Bookstore has also announced a new program where they will price-match against Amazon, Chegg, Barns & Noble, etc. See details here:

Sunday, August 7, 2016

A Struggle for the "Public" in Public Education

Here's an article in The Washington Post today about NAACP's call to stop having more of those privately managed charter schools. There are several cogent reasons in the article that explain why
such privatization of public schools needs to stop. There is also this admonition that is close to the bone for all levels of public schools. As the writer put it, "[people] want any school that calls itself 'public' to act as if the public matters."

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Minors in Class

At graduation ceremonies,  college administrators reciting remarkable statistics, like to include the age range of the year's graduates. And it is not uncommon to hear the youngest graduate is only 15 years old, an overachiever who must have started college at a very tender age.

Apparently, the college also has no restrictions on age for non-credit students attending Palomar. (For minor students in the K-12 system wanting to take credit classes, they have to complete a K-12 Special Admissions form.) As long as instructors agree to accept a minor student in their class, and the student has demonstrated ability to benefit from the course, the student should be allowed to enroll. Please be advised of this minor-now-allowed policy at Palomar and let your program coordinator know if you agree or object to having minors in your class. If there is an understanding beforehand, the coordinator can easily make the decision when you are not available, for example, during a semester break.

In an email message for coordinators, Gary Sosa, our new dept. chair, wrote, "For instructors, I don’t think this change will be a big deal. If students are too immature and exhibit disruptive behavior, like any adult student, they can be asked to leave the class. In most cases, minor students have been attentive and respectful." Katrina Tamura, an instructor in the San Marcos Evening program, vouched for that latter point, writing, "This summer, I have 6 [minors] in my class. I know two of them aren't even 15 yet. They are great students who are respectful and hardworking."


Sunday, July 24, 2016

Local School Tours to Showcase Innovative Classroom Designs

An upcoming event organized by NCPDF (North County Professional Development Federation) is open to anyone who is interested in participating in it.

What: A visit to three area high schools

When: The afternoon of 8/4, Thursday

Where: Design39Campus; San Marcos High School; High Tech High North County

Why: To see examples of innovative, learner-centered classroom design as we consider how space impacts student learning

How much: Free

How to RSVP: Use the link at the bottom of this flyer.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Get Projector Sound with This Cheat Sheet

Losing projector sound is a very common occurence, frustrating ESL classroom instructors at times. Now Gary Sosa has just sent coordinators an IS cheat sheet for fixing your no-sound-from-the-ceiling-projector classroom problem. The handy tips come with a few right and left clicks.
  1. Bottom right-hand corner of the monitor in the task tray, there is a speaker icon
  2. RIGHT click the speaker icon
  3. LEFT click on "Playback devices"
  4. A window should pop up that is titled "Sound"
  5. Make sure you're in the "Playback" tab
  6. RIGHT click on "Extron"
  7. LEFT click on "Set as default
To print the cheat sheet, click here.

Also, if you teach an evening class in San Marcos, there is an evening tech from 5:30 to 9:30 Monday through Thursday. If you call the Helpdesk extension at 2140 and listen to the prompts, there will be one for evening tech.