From left, student Isaac Cantu, teacher Diana Mayben and student Kori Gilman from Sonora Adult School.
Adult ed students ‘strike gold’ in the Mother lode
Programs rank among the top 5 in the state
April 17, 2023
Two LEAs in California’s Mother lode are celebrating their adult education programs being ranked in the top 5 for the state.
Sonora Union High School District and Calaveras County Office of Education are both included in the “Top 5 Institutions for Earning a Diploma, GED or High School Equivalency,” according to the LaunchBoard, a statewide data system for adult education accountability and improvement.
Students in the Mother lode have struck figurative gold, with two of the top 5 adult education programs in the entire state located there. There are approximately 340 adult education programs in California.
Since the 2018-19 school year, adult education programs throughout the state have faced serious challenges. Fewer students are enrolling and earning fewer diplomas or certificates overall. However, the Calaveras and Sonora adult education programs have excelled.
Each adult education program serves an average of 35-40 students each year. Adults 18 years or older are eligible for the program. This service is offered for free and provides individualized support for students to help them reach their educational and career goals.
“Success for the Calaveras and Sonora adult education programs can be attributed to the personalized touch and support that is provided each student,” explained Jessica Dorris, CCOE’s director of Curriculum and Instruction. “Our adult education teacher, Jenny Haskell, is dedicated to each and every one of her students. It’s incredible to witness.”
One of Haskell’s recent students said she is thankful to have found the Calaveras Adult Ed program, and Haskell in particular.
“We worked together to achieve a goal I thought I would never achieve. Every obstacle I had, she had a solution. I would not be able to have the job I do today without Jenny,” the student said. “She’s an amazing educator and her program is amazing. I wish more people knew about the program and wanted to take advantage of it.”
The Sonora program provides wrap-around support to their students, who often juggle family and work responsibilities in addition to their education.
“Adult education teacher Diana Mayben supports her students in so many ways,” said Sonora Union High School District Superintendent Ed Pelfrey. “Adult education is not just a program, it’s a person caring.”
Sonora Adult School student Kori Gilman said Mayben has been accommodating and “absolutely wonderful.”
“While having a small child, this program has allowed me to complete my dream of graduating. The process was much easier with the help of Ms. Mayben,” Gilman said. “Finally, after all these years I’ve officially graduated. It is such a huge weight off my shoulders. I can move forward with my life and go to college to pursue my dreams.”
Fellow Sonora Adult School student Isaac Cantu is also thankful for the program and Mayben.
“It’s been a light in a dark place,” he said. “There’s one person that I couldn’t have done all of this without and that’s Mrs. Mayben. This program works and makes anything possible. It’s easily one of the best choices of my life. Thank you, Mrs. Mayben.”
For more information about adult education programs in Calaveras County, please visit For more information about adult education programs in Sonora County, please visit
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