Observing ESL Classes Off Campus: Some Suggested Locations
Please note:
To make an appointment to observe, please call at least one week in advance, identify yourself as a
student in our M.A. program, and state what level you want to observe. If for any reason you cannot
observe, it is important to cancel at least twenty-four hours in advance. It is your responsibility to
arrive early for your visit and to stay for the duration of the class. You may also need to stay a few
minutes after class to talk with the teacher. Please remember that the instructors are accepting you
as a courtesy to help you with your professional preparation. Again, please do NOT wait until the last
City College of San Francisco (CCSF)
The San Francisco Community College District has several campuses, and each individual campus
has an ESL Coordinator. CCSF serves mainly resident immigrants and refugee populations. Both
non-credit and credit classes are held each weekday with focus on survival English, VESL, and
academic ESL. Proficiency levels range from literacy to advanced. In the non-credit system, the
lowest level is 1 and the highest level is 8.
Important note: Currently, responses to requests to observe classes at CCSF may be slow or
reluctant due to problems related to financial and accreditation difficulties.
1) Civic Center Campus, 750 Eddy Street
Observations require at least one week’s notice.
• Park Presidio United Methodist Church, 4301 Geary Blvd. (morning classes)
• A.P. Giannini Middle School, 3151 Ortega St. (evening classes)
Observations require at least one week’s notice, and students should expect to wait a week before an
observation is scheduled. This campus serves an international student body representing many
countries and languages. Contact Carole Glanzer at (415) 561-1880, or by e-mail at
cglanzer@ccsf.edu. When leaving her a message, it is helpful if you indicate when you can come
and what type of class you want to observe. Also, when you arrive for an observation, please report
to the front office.
2) Chinatown/North Beach Campus, 940 Filbert Street
Observations require at least one week’s notice, and can take place beginning in mid-September.
This campus serves over 5,000 with a staff of teachers at several sites. ESL, citizenship, vocational
education, and literacy courses are provided. Observers should be specific in the kind of observation
they want to do: class level, days and times available. When observing students have set up an
observation appointment, they should contact the ESL Coordinator via e-mail with the schedule that
they have set up. Lastly, the ESL Coordinator asks that observing students please keep private the
phone numbers and e-mail addresses of the teacher they observe. Contact Bill Small, ESL
Coordinator, by e-mail: wsmall@ccsf.edu; phone: (415) 561-1854.
3) Downtown Campus, 88 4th St. at Mission
Observations require at least one week’s notice.
This campus serves over 3,000 ESL students of various backgrounds and skill levels and offers
general and individual skill ESL classes, Bridge classes, VESL classes, and ESL classes using
computers. There are two intensive levels (in which a student will complete two levels in one
semester), intermediate-low and intermediate-high. Observations are not allowed during the last 3
weeks of classes. To arrange observations, e-mail Jim Parker at jparker@ccsf.edu.
Note: Currently, responses may be slow due to ongoing financial and accreditation issues.
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4) John Adams Campus, 1860 Hayes Street
Observations require at least one week’s notice.
Classes may be observed from mid-September to late November and from mid-February until the end
of April. Contact Robin Mackey at (415) 561-1954, or e-mail her at rmackey@ccsf.edu.
5) Mission Campus, 1125 Valencia Street
This campus serves over 5,000 mainly Spanish speaking adults and offers ESL and bilingual
programs in various skill areas. Observation times are from 8:30 a.m. to 9:05 p.m., Monday –
Thursday, 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Fridays, and 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturdays. Classes can
be observed from mid-September until the end of November, and from mid-February until the end of
April. Contact Lisa Wagner at lwagner@ccsf.edu or (415) 920-6012. Please send an email with
classes and class times which you are interested in.
6) Ocean Campus, 50 Phelan Ave. (main campus)
Observations require at least one week’s notice.
Currently there are almost 3,300 students enrolled in the ESL program on the main City College
campus. There are many types of ESL classes with multiple sections and virtually all carry academic
credit. Contact Erin Lofthouse, Coordinator, at (415) 239-3427, or e-mail her at elofthou@ccsf.edu.
(Note: Please avoid observing classes toward the beginning and end of their semester.) If she is
unavailable, please leave a detailed message. Even though this is the main campus, Ms. Lofthouse
does not coordinate observations for non-credit classes or for other campuses.
College Preparatory Programs
American Language Institute (ALI), San Francisco State University, HUM 101
Written procedures are sent out during the first week of October and March. (415) 338-1438.
The English Center, Oakland
Observations require at least one week’s notice.
This is a small intensive English program designed for international visa students, immigrants, and
refugees (some of whom have little formal education). On MWF students take core courses
(grammar, reading/writing, and listening/speaking), and on TTH they have mini-courses on topics
such as computer skills and career preparation. Levels range from low-beginning to college prep,
and classes are conducted during the mornings, afternoons and evenings. Contact Lynne Wilkins at
(510) 836-6700, or e-mail her at programs@englishcenter.edu. Or contact her program coordinator,
Michelle Duff, at publicrelations@englishcenter.edu. Please indicate which class/time you wish to
University of San Francisco—English as a Second Language Program, Turk & Stanyan
Observations require at least one week’s notice.
The ESL Program offers four levels of each of the following skills: Grammar, academic reading &
writing, and oral academic skills, and two levels of pronunciation and vocabulary & idioms, as well as
several elective courses. Classes are taught on either MWF or TR and class times are spread
throughout the day, from 8:00 until 6:45 p.m. Observations run from mid-September to the end of
November and the beginning of February to the end of April. Contact Lara Chavdarian, ESL Program
Assistant, at (415) 422-5983 or lschardarian@usfca.edu, and state the level and type of class you
wish to observe.
Adult Schools
Berkeley Adult School, Berkeley
Observations require at least one week’s notice.
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At Berkeley Adult School there are 29 sections of ESL classes. All classes integrate speaking,
listening, reading, and writing skills. Classes range from literacy to advanced, and meet Monday
through Friday 8:25 – 11:35 a.m. and 12:35 – 3:45 p.m. Evening classes are Monday through
Thursday 6:20 – 9:30 p.m. Classes run from September to the end of January. Contact Joan
Lehman at jlehman@berkeley.k12.ca.us or (510) 644-8964. Please note: Observers must provide
written confirmation that they are enrolled in an ESL teacher-training program. All observations must
be set up by contacting Joan Lehman, the Vice Principal, with at least one week’s advance notice.
Thank you for respecting these requirements.
West Contra Costa Adult Education, Richmond
Observations require at least one week’s notice.
At West Contra Costa Adult there are 46 classes with skill levels ranging from literacy to advanced.
Most daytime classes are multi-level. There is one ESL citizenship class, which meets Monday and
Wednesday evenings as well as a citizenship class that meets Tues. Thurs. mornings and Saturday
mornings. Regular ESL classes meet Monday – Saturday. The majority of the morning ESL classes
are CBET (ESL/family literacy) classes. Contact the ESL specialist, Kristen Pursley, at (510) 559-
2660 ext. 236, e-mail: kpursley@wccusd.net.
Sequoia Adult School, Redwood City
Observations require at least two weeks’ notice.
At Sequoia Adult School, there are four different levels of instruction (literacy to low intermediate).
Classes meet from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Monday and
Wednesday or Tuesday and Thursday. Please contact Barbara Hooper at bhooper@seq.org or (650)
306-8866 x7902.
San Mateo Adult School, located in Foster City, San Bruno and San Mateo
Observations require one week's notice.
At San Mateo Adult School morning and afternoon classes (Monday – Friday) at various levels meet
year-round at locations in Foster City, San Bruno and San Mateo. There are also evening classes in
San Mateo Monday – Thursday. Contact Tim Doyle at (650) 558-2102 or e-mail him at
tdoyle@smace.org. State the class level and the approximate time that you wish to observe.
South San Francisco Adult Education, South San Francisco locations
Observations require one week's notice.
SSF Adult Ed provides the non-English speaking adult a basic understanding and practical
application of speaking, reading and writing English. Computer-assisted learning and CBET classes
also offered. Classes meet at a variety of locations in the morning and evening. Contact Fernanda
Carrera at gcarrera@ssfusd.org or Jim Murphy at jcmurphy@ssfusd.org.
Other Possibilities
College of Marin ESL Center, Kentfield
Observations require two weeks’ notice.
At the College of Marin both credit (ESL) and non-credit (ESL) classes are available and part of the
College Skills Department. Observations run from mid-September to early November and from
February until late April. Morning, evening and Saturday classes are available. Most courses meet
at the Kentfield Campus. The main office is in Harlan Center, Room 101. In April 2013, due to
building renovations, the ESL program will be moving, tentatively to the Science Center, Room 137.
Contact the administrative assistant, Alejandro Suarez, at alejandro.suarez@marin.edu or (415) 485-
9642, and indicate whether you are interested in observing a credit or a non-credit class. You may 
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also contact the ESL Chair, Barbara Bonander, by e-mailing her at Barbara.bonander@marin.edu.
Please note: The following programs have indicated that they do NOT want observers:
• Academy of Art
• American Language Program at CSU Hayward, now CSU East Bay
• Golden Gate University
• The Korean Center & Intercultural Institute of California
• Jewish Vocational Services
• Neighborhood Centers Adult School (East Bay)