November

The Student Success Task Force Recommendations—What’s Next?

It’s hard to believe that the Student Success Task Force (SSTF) Recommendations were adopted by the Board of Governors less than two years ago, especially given the many changes that colleges have made, or will soon be making, with respect to various aspects of the functioning of their matriculation and counseling programs (see http://californiacommunitycolleges.cccco.edu/PolicyinAction/StudentSucce... for more information).

Collegial Consultation: The Art of Influencing and Being Influenced

I recently attended a large multi-college district’s “Shared Governance” symposium and found it very interesting to observe how impassioned we are about being heard, about having voice and influence upon our collective destinies. What I didn’t hear, until the panel’s student appointee spoke, was an equivalent passion towards hearing another’s voice, of being influenced by other perspectives and ideals. Leave it to the students to teach us what we should already know.

Advocacy at the Local Level: What Your Senate Can Do to Stay Informed and Active

The California Community College System has been the target of more legislation in the past two years than at any other time in recent memory. The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges works diligently to represent the voice of faculty in Sacramento when legislative actions involving education are proposed.

Integrating Adjunct Faculty into the College Community

One of the most frequent complaints expressed by colleagues around the state is how difficult it is to get volunteers for committee work and other activities around campus. Lately my answer to them has always been the same: Are you asking your adjunct faculty to participate, and if not, why not? Most people express surprise at this idea, but it is a thought worth considering.

The Insidious “D”

The “D” grade is a bad investment. It is bad for California and it is bad for students. To be honest, it is a false promise, a deceptive key to the gate of success.

California public education has long held to the grading standards of the “A, B, C, D, F, P, NP” system, with the occasional plus/minus thrown into the mix. “A, B, C and P” represent success. They are the letters you wear on your scout sash to show the achievements you have realized and the hurdles you have overcome. “F and NP” are for failing. These aspects of the system are plain and simple.

Let Bylaws Be Bylaws: A Cautionary Tale About Senate Succession

In recent years, succession planning has become an important topic within our community college system. For example, to fully meet accreditation Standard IV, colleges need to demonstrate that they have processes in place to create leadership capacity by encouraging broad participation. In fact, Los Angeles City College received the following accreditation recommendation in 2009:

What Happened in the CSU with American Institutions?

A little background: Title 5 §40404 requires that California State University graduates demonstrate competency in specified areas of U.S. history and government. This requirement, commonly known as American Institutions (AI), is typically met by taking two 3-unit courses, one in U.S. history and one in American government. Transfer students typically take these courses prior to transfer, and most “double count” them with two of their GE courses. The UC has a similar requirement but considers the students’ high school experience as meeting this “competency.”

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