Whereas, In 1995 the Board of Governors in "The New Basic Agenda: Policy Directions for Student Success: states that as our society moves from an "industrial-based to a knowledge-based society," students must be taught information retrieval skills that will prepare them for successful college, vocational, and lifelong learning experiences;
Whereas, In May 1999, the Board of Governors recognized that the implementation of information competency as an associate's degree requirement was an academic and professional matter and delegated to the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges the responsibility for developing a recommendation to the Board of Governors relative to information competency;
Whereas, The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges has spent five years studying the feasibility of instituting an information competency graduation requirement, during which time it has written papers, held extensive discussions in the field, and passed resolutions that confirmed the importance of students' achieving information competency to succeed in this information era, including the ability to recognize the need for information, and to find, evaluate, use, and communicate information in all its formats; and
Whereas, The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges has recommended a graduation information competency requirement to the Board of Governors, and the Consultation Council has concurred with the recommendation, but the Department of Finance of the State of California has stopped the passage of an information competency regulation by concluding that this recommendation "would require districts to review existing general education curriculum to ensure students can demonstrate these new standards, activity which would result in reimbursable mandated costs...in excess of the $200 threshold for an unfunded mandate";
Resolved, That the Academic Senate respond to the Department of Finance regarding its recent determinations that an information competency graduation requirement would result in an unfunded mandate;
Resolved, That the Academic Senate continue to pursue its recommendation for a statewide information competency graduation requirement to ensure that the California community colleges best serve the needs of students; and
Resolved, That the Academic Senate urge local senates to pursue information competency requirements on their own campuses to ensure that California community college students are appropriately prepared to function in this information era.
MSC Disposition: Department of Finance, Legislature, Board of Governors, Chancellor's Office, Local Senates
The Board of Governors made independence from the Department of Finance a priority and by Spring 2003 there was a bill in the Legislature supporting the Board of Governors' position. Local senates continue to be urged to pursue information competency requirements independently of the Department of Finance ruling.