In a growing global economy, the social and economic foundation of the nation is dependent upon the educational level of its workforce. Therefore, we must not only ensure that educational opportunities are available to all students, but that these same students achieve equitable educational outcomes. Outcomes, as opposed to access, will ensure that historically underrepresented students will possess the needed credentials to gain economic, social and political power to function in a more global society.
At the second annual ASCCC Accreditation Institute (January 25-27, 2008), many were surprised to hear about the impact of the "two-year rule" implementation on our accreditation process. The "two-year rule" is a federally imposed mandate that requires accrediting agencies to place a two-year deadline on correction of all recommendations that relate to deficiencies.
What follows is a document prepared by the faculty of SACC. It is a product of discussions that began due to concern about how colleges are dealing with the development of "compliant" degrees. As individuals, and as a system, I think we were all surprised by the quick timeline for "fixing" our degrees. Hopefully you will find some of our suggestions and explanations helpful.
Academic Senate Resolutions about Advanced Placement (AP)
Academic Senate resolutions have called for investigating the feasibility of establishing statewide standards to be used for the application of AP credits (S05 9.03), reviewing research on AP credit policies and procedures (S94 4.05/F06 4.02), and developing a best practices paper (F06 4.02). Now is the time to establish such policies and procedures.
Why All Faculty Should Be Attentive To This Discussion?
Do you ever look at your students and wonder what their high school experience was like? When was the last time you set foot on a high school campus? If you are like me, it may have been quite awhile, and in many cases, things have changed. As the population of our colleges is increasingly younger and as we learn that direct college going after high school usually yields better student success, we as college faculty benefit from knowing where our students come from.
I do believe that all politics is local. And all legislation is also local. Textbooks, nursing career technical education, accountability, part-time faculty-these are all issues that will be voted on in Sacramento, and all will have an impact on us at the local level.
One of the many tools that a senate president needs is a gift card to the local coffee house. It's not the drinking of coffee that makes this tool important, it's the act of getting a cup of coffee and sharing it with a colleague that makes it valuable. Senate presidents need organizational skills plus the ability to both take initiative and follow through, but it is also critically important that faculty leaders are able to communicate and negotiate-hence the coffee house becomes a valuable asset.
Ah! Winter, and a young man's (and woman's) fancy turns to...the Legislature? Well, maybe not, but this is an interesting time of the year in Sacramento. We had the general election in November---re-elected the governor (four more years of cigars and strudel), approved bonds (1D will be helping a lot of our districts with new facilities) and, wonders of wonders, even voted out some incumbent legislators.
At the Fall 2006 Plenary Session, the Technology Committee held a breakout to discuss various issues surrounding the percentage of load instructors were permitted to teach online and class size in distance education (DE) sections. Some questions and observations were presented in order to initiate a discussion. As was suspected, limits on how many DE sections someone could teach (where such limits existed) varied wildly across the state, ranging from 20% to 100%, Some colleges have limits codified in their bargained contracts; some had never even broached the topic.
Given the fact that a third of California community colleges are looking at the departure of either a college president or district chancellor this spring, you may find this information timely. During the 2005-06 academic year, the Senate's Educational Policies Committee conducted a survey of local senates in response to resolution S05 3.02 asking about their policies and practices for conducting searches for presidents and chancellors.