Spanish-speaking students and parents can take part in a series of classes being hosted by the Laguna Beach Unified School District with help from the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach.

Wednesday marked the start of a 12-week literacy program at the Boys & Girls Club, 1085 Laguna Canyon Road.

Javier Diaz, the district's school community liaison, will lead the program to develop family reading routines and vocabulary for Latino parents and their children, according to a district news release.

"Literacy is a crucial skill necessary for all students to succeed academically," Diaz said in the release. "This program will provide bilingual techniques parents can use at home to develop their children's literacy skills and enhance academic achievement."

In addition to Wednesday's class, future sessions will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on the following Wednesdays: Feb. 26; March 5, 19 and 26; April 2, 9, 23 and 30; and May 7, 14 and 28.

Parents can also boost their computer skills with a class on Internet safety, setting up email accounts and communicating with teachers through those accounts.

Sessions will be held from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Laguna Beach High School library on Thursday and the following Thursdays: Feb. 27; March 6, 20 and 27; April 10 and 24; and May 8 and 22.

Diaz will also lead the computer training classes.

"One of the challenges some in the Hispanic community face is familiarity with the basics of computer use," he said. "These classes will cover computer basics as well as help parents understand how their children can use technology as a tool in their learning.

"Classes will not only train parents on the use of technology but also connect their training in meaningful ways to be a positive influence on their children."

Parents are invited to attend one or more of each session and can join at any time. For more information on either program, contact Diaz at jdiaz@lbusd.org or (949) 394-6076.

—Bryce Alderton

Twitter: @AldertonBryce