ASCCC Caucus Procedures and Guidelines
DEFINITION AND Purpose:
Academic Senate caucuses are intended to serve as groups of independently organized faculty to meet, network, and deliberate collegially in order to form a collective voice on issues of common concern that caucus members feel are of vital importance to faculty and the success of students as they relate to academic and professional matters.
Caucuses may also engage in activities to provide professional development and mentoring opportunities in coordination with ASCCC leadership while still protecting the autonomy of the caucuses.
Caucuses can seek solutions to concerns and issues raised by their members through the resolution process and can disseminate Academic Senate resources such as papers, Rostrums, and event information.
Caucuses should remain informed about ASCCC positions and current activities so that any caucus activity supplements the work/goals of ASCCC.
- If caucus deliberations lead to information or recommendations that will inform and potentially improve upon ASCCC activities, the Caucus Contact shall communicate such to the designee assigned as a resource to the caucus, who will inform the ASCCC leadership.
- If a caucus forms a position or recommendation that seeks to alter or reverse ASCCC positions or current activities, then due process must be followed through the normal resolution process.
RECOGNITION OF A CAUCUS:
In order to be formally recognized by the Academic Senate, caucuses must meet the following criteria:
- Caucus membership must be voluntary and open to all community college faculty. Additionally, caucuses must make every effort to provide open, public access to meetings.
- Caucuses must meet at Plenary session and may provide related meeting documents to the Academic Senate through their designee assigned as a resource in order to post information onto the ASCCC website.
- Caucus members cannot be charged a fee or dues to participate in the caucus nor can a caucus fundraise.
- Caucuses are not directed or controlled by the Academic Senate and shall not act on behalf of the ASCCC unless engaged in coordination with the ASCCC in professional development and mentoring.
- Caucuses shall not present themselves as acting for, or representing the ASCCC or its interests in any manner or media.
- Caucuses must operate in a lawful manner.
- Caucuses will not promote hate, violence, or any other offensive action against any other person(s).
- Caucuses should be formed around broad issues of ongoing concern rather than single or short-term issues. In particular, there should be a clear connection to academic and professional matters as established in Title 5 and Education Code. Caucuses should be formed to focus on issues across the entire California community college system not just the specific needs or desires of a particular college or district.
- Caucuses should supplement the work of ASCCC and its standing committees, existing caucuses, or other representative faculty groups.
- Caucuses are not intended to be discipline-specific or professional organizations.
APPLICATION FOR CAUCUS RECOGNITION:
At any time during the year, the interested members of the proposed caucus may submit a Recognition of Caucus Application to the ASCCC Office.
Caucuses are established by a simple majority vote of the ASCCC Executive Committee to approve the written application. The application shall state the purpose of the proposed caucus, names of members (minimum of ten faculty from at least four different colleges and at least two districts), the contact information for leadership of the proposed caucus, and a statement explaining how the objectives/activities of the caucus will further those of the ASCCC.
ASCCC reserves the right not to recognize a caucus if it feels the caucus does not meet the criteria for recognition of a caucus listed above. If a caucus is not recognized, the individual who submitted the Recognition of Caucus Application will be notified of any questions for clarification, or the reasons or concerns with the proposed caucus. If a caucus application is denied, a revised application may be re-submitted to the ASCCC Office.
Every five years caucuses should notify the ASCCC Office of their intent to remain active. Caucuses designating a new contact person should also inform the ASCCC Office. A previously approved caucus that becomes inactive can be re-established as a caucus by submitting a new written application.
- Caucus membership must be voluntary and open to all California Community College faculty.
- No fees shall be charged to the caucus membership.
- Caucus membership must consist of a minimum of ten faculty from at least four different colleges and at least two districts.
- Caucus members may affiliate with one or more caucuses.
- Caucus membership should not consist of only a small representation of a particular discipline.
- Executive Committee members may participate in caucuses and serve as caucus resources, but may not be in caucus leadership positions.
PROCEDURES AND GUIDELINES:
- A caucus should determine its leadership structure as it sees fit.
- Caucuses should recognize at least one member to serve as a contact person to the ASCCC.
- Caucuses should provide open public access to its meetings. It is recommended that caucuses conduct their meetings in compliance with the Ralph M. Brown Act (Government Code §54950- 54961).
- Unless specifically required to do so by the procedures and guidelines described here or published on the Academic Senate website, caucuses are free to structure their internal organization and operations as they see fit.
- A caucus that has remained inactive for a period of five years will be considered terminated.
- In order to stay active, caucuses must inform the ASCCC Office every five years of its intent to remain active and provide a current list of its membership. If a caucus fails to alert the ASCCC Office of its desire to stay active, the caucus shall be deemed inactive. The ASCCC will continue to provide a space for potential meetings of the caucus at Plenary sessions until the caucus is deemed inactive. A new application will need to be submitted to renew the caucus.
- The Executive Committee reserves the right to withdraw its recognition of an active caucus in consultation with the caucus leadership if the Executive Committee determines that the caucus has violated any of the procedures or guidelines established for caucuses.
- Any member of the Executive Committee may bring forward an agenda item to withdraw recognition of an active caucus if the caucus is believed to have violated the established Academic Senate procedures and guidelines for caucuses. A two-thirds majority of Executive Committee members is required to withdraw recognition from a caucus.
- Recognition of an active caucus will not be withdrawn simply due to a disagreement between the caucus and the Academic Senate.
- Any caucus actions that subject the ASCCC to potential harm, liability, or fraud will result in immediate termination of the caucus.
Any inquiries about forming a caucus should be directed to the Senate Office at info [at] asccc.org.