by Bara Waters
Most students come back from winter break with tales about holiday celebrations, family antics or ski trips, but learners at the Alameda Community Learning Center (ACLC) arrived back at school this week to the satisfaction of new lockers they built themselves.
Similar to a pioneer barn-raising, ACLC held a ‘locker-raising’ on the first Saturday of winter break in which school community members assembled 420 new lockers at their new campus. By pitching in to build and install the lockers, the school saved over $13,000, more than half of the original quote for pre-assembled lockers.
After two traumatic years in which ACLC was forced to relocate twice, the locker-raising was not only a practical and necessary addition to their new campus, but a symbolic event.
“The ability to invest in such permanent fixtures as lockers really affirms that we have an 11-year lease at this facility,” said ACLC Lead Facilitator (principal), David Hoopes. “It’s a celebration of our school’s resilience and the fact that we don’t have to pack up and move again any time soon.”
The locker project was the culmination of a capital fund drive started after moving to the new facility last September. In addition to individual contributions, ACLC raised nearly $5000 by hosting an Alameda community-wide concert at Eagles Hall featuring popular Bay Area band, The California Honeydrops.
“Due to the expense and general overwhelm from moving twice in two years, our community was both tapped out and exhausted,” said Hoopes. “But this project became a priority the whole school got behind and everyone doubled-down and sacrificed to make it happen,” Hoopes said.
ACLC is a tuition-free public charter middle and high school located at 1900 Third Street, Alameda, CA. It is a progressive and project-based educational community founded on a democratic model that empowers learners.