South Gate classes will be held at high schools

By Joseph Hernandez

The new South Gate Education Center campus was delayed until Spring 2025, until then classes will take place in Odyssey High School and South Gate High School.

By the end of this semester, the South Gate campus will no longer operate in its current facility, as it was purchased after its lease ended.

The transition from the current facility to the new one was originally planned for this semester, but the transition is now expected to happen in Spring 2025.

Vice President of Administrative Services Michael Pascual said that delays are heavily due to the weather and other issues that occurred before construction.

“The weather is the primary reason for the delay. Other reasons contributed. For instance, a few years back there was an embargo on steel, especially the steel that comes from overseas, and then the pandemic happened. Because of the pandemic, shipments were delayed, especially from overseas,” Pascual said.

As of now, plans have been made to provide students with classes in the South Gate area for the Summer, Fall and Winter semesters.

Dean of the South Gate campus Al Rios said that once the campus knew the timeframe was going to be different than originally planned, the campus started to look for places to operate in.

“We looked at different places for the college. We ended up with South Gate High School and Odyssey High School. They’re adjacent to each other,” said Rios.

A lease is being secured on a piece of property at South Gate High School.

Summer classes won’t be available at South Gate High School, but once the lease is fully secured classes will be available in the Fall from morning to night.

Eight module classes will be hosted at a part of the school that will separate ELAC students from South Gate High School students.

Odyssey High School is a much smaller building compared to South Gate High School.

In the Summer the whole building will host ELAC classes and students, but during the Fall only part of the building’s space will host ELAC.

Under instructions from Odyssey, ELAC classes for the Fall won’t be held in the morning because its high school students have classes during that time. However, ELAC classes will be held during the afternoon.

The shuttle will still be available for students, but a plan has been made to change where the shuttle will be located and how it will operate for the next semester.

Currently, the shuttle is located right outside the current facility on Calden Ave.

Next semester the shuttle will be relocated to an ELAC-owned parking lot along Southern Avenue at the corner of Calden Avenue.

Pascual said there is a plan to remodel the parking lot to make it more safe and secure for students that are either waiting for the shuttle or getting dropped off.

“We’re going to redo all of the lighting so that it’s safe. We’re going to put up a guard house, but that part (of the plan) is not fully developed. We will have security either through the sheriff’s office or through a private security company,” Pascual said.

When students are at the high schools waiting for the shuttle or getting dropped off, ELAC security will drive around the area in a patrol car.

Two shuttles will be provided to students: one will go to Monterey Park and the other will go to the Odyssey and South Gate high schools.

The Monterey Park shuttle will go by the same schedule as usual.

The plan for the shuttle to the high school campuses is to run buses every 10 to 15 minutes, depending on traffic.

The current white shuttles and blue shuttles will be used to differentiate which shuttle goes to Monterey Park or the high schools.

The Office of Administrations will be available for students in the South Gate area, as a lease was secured on two spaces at a shopping center on Santa Fe and Firestone Blvd.

Students will still be provided with student services such as counseling , financial aid, admissions and other student needs at the temporary location.

Part of the evolving plan is to lease a separate, larger space for faculty and classrooms.

The shopping center is part of the planned route for the shuttle that goes to the high schools. The shuttle will stop by the center to drop off any faculty, staff or students on the way to the parking lot.

Across the street from the shopping center on Santa Fe, the new South Gate campus is being constructed.

Pascual said that because the new campus is across the street.

“When students come into these spaces, they have eyesight of the new campus. To our campus, there’s value to that. …We don’t want the students to feel like they’re being shepherded into these locations. (We want students to) keep their eyes on the prize, which is the new campus,” Pascual said.

Throughout the semester, students will be updated and informed of the ongoing plans for the South Gate campus in the upcoming semesters.

Pascual said he recommends that students can email the Deans of the South Gate Campus Al Rios and Erica Mayorga or himself with any questions and concerns.

If students want to learn more about the South Gate campus lease, they can read “Center’s lease ends in 2024, temporary location search begins” by Luis Diaz on elaccampusnews.com

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