Re: Supporting Timely Implementation of the Recommendations of the Chancellor’s Task Force on Accreditation, 2015
Dear Chancellor Harris and Vice Chancellor Pamela D. Walker:
The Council of University of California Faculty Associations (CUCFA) strongly supports the recommendations of the California Community College Chancellor’s Task Force on Accreditation, 2015.
We are also pleased to hear that the Board of Governors unanimously decided to forward the 268-page Task Force report to the US Department of Education. We applaud your leadership in moving toward an expeditious implementation of the move to a new accrediting body for the California community colleges.
CUCFA has closely followed the highly visible controversy about the ACCJC and the case of City College of San Francisco. We issued a public statement on July 11, 2013, urging the ACCJC to reverse its decision to revoke CCSF accreditation, and applauding the academic record of City College.
We have a strong interest in this matter because, according to UC, “thirty percent of entering UC undergraduates are transfer students, and 90 percent of them come from a California Community Colleges.” The CCC is a vitally important partner in regard to improving graduation rates, especially among underrepresented and low-income students. According to the Public Policy Institute of California, City College of San Francisco has the fourth highest transfer rate among the large colleges in the state. City College has a higher than average completion rate and persistence rate, and students who transfer from City College have higher GPAs when they get to CSU than other California Community Colleges.
The ACCJC appears to have minimized the importance of this academic success. The result of the ACCJC’s behavior has been that one of the strongest transfer institutions in the state has been threatened with closure for over three years, with its educational mission disrupted and its base funding deeply impacted. Most important, untold students’ academic progress has been disrupted.
At stake also is the broader issue of the legitimacy of the entire accreditation process, which is being severely strained by the unfortunate track record of the ACCJC.
Thank you for your leadership in implementing the Task Force recommendations in a timely manner, to prevent further damage to California’s college systems.
On behalf of the Board of the Council of UC Faculty Associations