Rex Richardson at podium

Ninth District Councilman Rex Richardson delivers his 2018 State of the District speech beneath the Vietnam-era Huey helicopter.

College classes will be taught at the Michelle Obama Neighborhood Library beginning next February in a step toward a satellite campus in north Long Beach.

Long Beach's City Council approved the deal Tuesday night to have Long Beach City College offer non-credit and certificate courses in partnership with the city's Library Services Department. Ninth District Councilman Rex Richardson brought the idea to the council as part of his Everyone In plan.

"Since we (the council) first took the vote to bring college education north in principle, they (the LBCC Board of Trustees) voted to approve it as well," Richardson said. "They're already offering classes at Jordan High. Now they will bring them to the library."

The classes at Jordan High are part of the City College partnership with the school district to offer dual enrollment program for 11th and 12th grade students to earn college credits while still in high school, according to LBCC spokesperson Stacey Toda.

Classes at the library would be targeted to adult education, and eventually will include certificate courses that help develop skills for jobs. The non-credit courses will be offered free, with no tuition or textbook costs.

Richardson credited LBCC Trustee Uduak Joe-Ntuk with helping to create the program. Joe-Ntuk represents Area 1, which includes north Long Beach.

Under the agreement, there will be dedicated space in the library for college classes.The program will start with three-week non-credit classes taking place from 9 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and Thursdays. Courses will be offered back-to-back over a nine-week period.

The first classes start on Feb. 6, in conjunction with the beginning of LBCC's spring semester. Toda said specific classes to be offered had not been determined yet.

"There have been several ideas discussed regarding what kind of classes will be taught, including a security guard certification and computer classes," Today wrote in an email. "But we are still working on the details and nothing has been determined yet."

Course offerings and signup information will be released later. For more information about Long Beach City College, go to lbcc.edu.

The agreement runs to May 21, 2021 — the end of the spring semester that year. Richardson said he plans to continue working toward a permanent North Long Beach presence for LBCC.

Harry Saltzgaver can be reached at hsalt@gazettes.com.

Harry has been executive editor of Gazette Newspapers for more than 26 years. He has been in the newspaper business for more than 35 years, with experience on both weekly and metropolitan daily papers in Colorado and California.

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