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Academic Senate Newsletter

Monday August 1, 2011

August… Already?

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Greetings! I hope you had a chance to get away and enjoy the summer. We’ve been keeping an eye on things at the state level—and will continue to do so. Read on for a quick update. The first day of classes always comes too soon—be sure to make the most of what’s left of summer.

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The Budget

So, we have a budget. Is it a good one for the community colleges? At the present time, most would say we fared quite well. As the budget is based on projected revenues that may or may not be as projected, things could get much worse – very quickly. As explained by Vice Chancellor for Fiscal Policy Dan Troy’s in his July 8 budget update: “To allay concerns that the revenues will not match assumptions, the budget includes a control section giving the Director of Finance authority to reduce appropriations as specified below upon a finding by December 15th that revenues are not keeping pace with budget assumptions.” A revenue shortfall would result in various “triggers”. At the first tier with consequences, the community colleges would be required to increase fees to $46/unit for the Spring 2012 term.

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TMCs, C-ID, and 1440

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Visit the C-ID website at www.c-id.net to review the Computer Science and Music TMCs and descriptors for a variety of disciplines. Vetting is scheduled to end October 16th.

On July 20th a hearing on the implementation of Senate Bill 1440 (Padilla, 2010) was held at Los Angeles Southwest College. Testimony was heard regarding the tensions and challenges involved with the implementation of this legislation. Funding for degree development efforts was also announced. The following is from a press release from our Chancellor’s Office (the full text is available at cccco.edu): California Community Colleges Chancellor Jack Scott and California State University Chancellor Charles B. Reed today announced that their systems have been awarded $1 million from Complete College America’s Completion Innovation Challenge grant program to assist students in transferring from a community college to a California State University with an associate degree and a clear pathway to graduating with a bachelor’s degree.

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Title 5 Changes – Repetition and Withdrawal

At the July Board of Governors (BoG) meeting, there was a 2nd reading of proposed Title 5 changes relating to repetition (for a substandard grade) and withdrawal. The language was modified so that repeatable courses are not impacted. The Academic Senate will need to establish a clear position on repeatable courses at the Fall 2011 Plenary Session – the BoG members asked about and clearly expect to see new language relating to repeatable courses.

Copies of the exact language of the proposed regulation, and all of the information upon which the proposal is based, may be obtained online here.

The new Title 5 regulations effectively, tie withdrawal and repetition for a substandard grade together—permitting a student three "takes" of a course, with an additional enrollment permitted under specified circumstances. The Academic Senate took a position supporting increased limits on course-taking at the Spring 2011 Plenary (see Resolution 18.05). The Title 5 language does not limit the number of times a student can take a course, but rather imposes such a limit by limiting the apportionment that a college can claim. The new regulations will technically become effective 30 days after they are filed with the Secretary of State. That can’t occur until 1) the end of the 15-day re-notice period (August 3rd); 2) the Chancellor's Office responds to any new comments received; and 3) the new regulations are filed with Department of Finance for fiscal review and sign-off. That could occur quickly after August 3rd or it could take months. Once the regulations are effective, the colleges have 180 days to implement them. The Chancellor's Office has informed colleges that they should advise students that this will take effect for the Spring 2012 term and they should be sure to include information about the limits in their 2012-13 catalogs. While the new regulations may be in place by the Spring 2012 term, the limit on apportionment will not be in effect until Fall 2012. Effective counseling of students by counselors and instructional faculty will be critical as this regulation takes effect.

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Legislative Misc…

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AB 515 (Brownley) did not make it out of committee. In the final hour, this bill that sought to permit community colleges to offer “extension” courses for credit was subject to such an array of amendments that needed further amending—and probably did not please the bill’s original supporters. Assembly member Portantino has a bill that would permit an expansion of concurrent enrollment and Senator Padilla has one that would mandate reciprocity with respect to transfer degrees. Another bill would mandate the provision of credit by exam opportunities to veterans. While the Senate has adopted positions supporting reciprocity in the context of transfer degrees, and the use of credit by exam to award credit for all students when appropriate, mandating either is a concern that we will continue to express to the authors of this legislation. For the latest legislative news—and other timely information—follow us on Twitter.

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Academic Senate Events

This year’s Faculty Leadership and Curriculum Institutes were a great success. Welcome to all the new senate and curriculum leaders out there! Materials from the Leadership, SLO, and Curriculum Institutes are available at asccc.org. We’re also pleased to announce the launching of our new curriculum website – visit us it at www.ccccurriculum.info.

Mark your calendars for the following fall events:

Discipline Input Group Meetings
(Disciplines TBD)
October 14, 2011: South
October, 28, 2011: North

Area Meetings
October 21 – 22, 2011

Fall Plenary Session
November 3 – 5, 2011
Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina



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