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Youth writing & tech workshop this summer
Madeline Grigsby shares her multimedia presentation at last year’s Writing and Technology Workshop. - photo by Photo Contributed
The Great Valley Writing Project is off and running.

The “Writing and Technology Workshops” is sponsored by California State University-Stanislaus, San Joaquin County Office of Education and GVWP.

At Ripon High, 88 students from the area – included are Manteca and Lathrop – are currently participating in the first of three community-funded programs. They’re exploring writing, publishing and the use of media software.

Many of the local school districts were forced to trim summer school for financial reasons, with GVWP helping fill the void.

“We are doubling our capacity,” said Melissa King, coordinator of the programs.

She’s concerned about the enrollment at Goodwin School, 1271 N. Main St., Manteca. King noted earlier this week that 25 youngsters – this particular workshop is available to third- through eighth- grade students – have expressed interest in participating in the workshop scheduled from July 5 through July 16 but are in need of financial support.

A dual-funding system allows for youngsters in this situation to receive scholarships. But enrollment is necessary since those parents who do pay the registration fees are matched by contributions from local individuals and businesses.

Although the program starts in July, she indicated that leaders must decide whether to proceed or cancel the GVWP at Goodwin by June 16.

“We still need 15 additional enrollments to balance the Goodwin budget,” King said. “SJCOE had not only agreed to provide the Goodwin site at no charge, but they have offered to do send their technology staff in late to June to provide computers and reconfigure networks for our program.

“We can’t ask the SJCOE staff to invest the time unless we know that we have enough funds to run the program.”

Cost for the two-week workshop at Goodwin is $100 per student.

Meanwhile, the Woodward School workshop scheduled for June 21 through July 1 and open to fourth- through ninth- grade students has a registration fee of $125 per student. The extra $25 in this case, King says, will be used to reimburse Manteca Unified’s operations budget.

Manteca High teacher Elyce Silva assisted last year’s workshop and is back to help out at Ripon High.

“The workshop gives the writer the creative space they need to grow, with just enough academic guidance from seasoned teachers to prepare them for high school, college and the work place,” she said. “The student-to-teacher ratio allows for each student’s unique needs to be met.”

The 30-hour programs are scheduled for the weekday mornings. Those taking part will have a chance to learn important writing skills, meet in small groups, and spend plenty of time working on independent projects.

Students will also use the GVWP computer software to compose, polish, and publish their work.

“Many students are comfortable using technology on a daily basis,” added Manteca instructor Nick Silva. “So this workshop builds on what they already know.”

During the final days, students can look forward to submitting their polished writing pieces for publication.

For more information, call GVWP office at 209-667-3490.